Armour in Canadian service: Churchill tank

Churchill Infantry tank

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3524542)

Infantry of Les Fusiliers de Mont-Royal Regiment taking cover between two British 79th Armoured Division Churchill tanks and a Fort Garry Horse Sherman, during an attack in the vicinity of Oldenburg, Germany, 29 April 1945.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3608069)

Churchill Mk. 2, 14th Canadian Army Tank Regiment, (Calgary Tanks), Regimental Head Quarters tank, post Dieppe Raid . The original ROUNDER that landed in Dieppe was T-68452, this tank is a rebuilt one, as seen by the "R" at the end of the WD number. (Anthony Sewards)

The Tank, Infantry, Mk IV (A22) Churchill was a British heavy infantry tank best known for its heavy armour, large longitudinal chassis with all-around tracks with multiple  its ability to climb , and its use as the basis of many specialist vehicles. It was one of the heaviest tanks of the war.

The origins of the Churchill's design lay in the expectation that war in Europe might well be fought in conditions similar to those of the the First World War, and thus emphasized the ability to cross difficult ground. There were eleven bogies either side, each carrying two 10-inch wheels. Only nine of the bogies normally took the vehicle weight, the front coming into play when the vehicle nosed into the ground or against an obstacle, the rear acting in part as a track tensioner. Due to the number of wheels, the tank could survive losing several without much in the way of adverse effects as well as traversing steeper terrain obstacles. The Churchill had many variations, including many specialized modifications. The most significant change to the Churchill was that it was up-gunned from 2-pounder to 6-pounder and then 75 mm guns over the course of the war. By the war's end, the late model Churchill Mk VII had exceptional amounts of armour – considerably more than the German Tiger tank. (Wikipedia)

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3192368)

Churchill tanks on the Dieppe beach, 19 August 1942. A burning LCT (Landing Craft, Tank) TLC5 No. 121 near the beach after the raid by allied (mostly Canadian) air, naval and land forces on german defences. Churchill tanks and bodies of allied servicemen are pictured on the beach. The tank at left is one from 9 Troop 14th Army Tank Battalion (The Calgary Regiment (Tank)) which was transported by TLC5.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3205214)

Churchill tank with the British 79th Armoured Division, which landed in support of the Canadian landings on D-Day.  This tank was the close support version of the Churchill Mk. IV armed with a 95-mm close-support howitzer in place of the main gun. It was used for busting bunkers.  The photo would have been taken shortly after the 6 June 1944 landings. The "Y"-shaped pipes on the rear decking are exhaust pipe extensions to allow deep wading.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3226337)

Churchill tank  armed with a 95-mm close-support howitzer in place of the main gun, with the 8th Canadian Infantry Brigade advancing in first stage of the attack of Caen, 18 July 1944.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3223877)

Churchill Infantry Tank Mk 1, 12th Canadian Army Tank Regiment (Three Rivers) taking part in Exercise Spartan in the UK, 8-10 March 1943.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3238637)

Churchill tank, Three Rivers Regiment, Worthing, UK, 22 July 1942.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3209253)

Churchill tank, Three Rivers Regiment on exercise in England, 8 Mar 1943.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 14104)

Churchill tank, Three Rivers Regiment taking part in exercise Spartan in England, 8-10 March 1943.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 14110)

Churchill tank, Three Rivers Regiment taking part in exercise Spartan in England, 8-10 March 1943.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 14113)

Churchill tank, Three Rivers Regiment taking part in exercise Spartan in England, 8-10 March 1943.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 14105)

Churchill tank, Three Rivers Regiment taking part in exercise Spartan in England, 8-10 March 1943.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 14103)

Churchill tank, Three Rivers Regiment taking part in exercise Spartan in England, 8-10 March 1943.

(IWM Photo, H27924)

Canadian infantry riding on a Churchill III tank during Exercise 'Spartan', 9 March 1943.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3607575)

Churchill Infantry Tank Mk. I of the 11th Army Tank Battalion (The Ontario Regiment (Tank)), 1st Canadian Army Tank Brigade, being inspected by General McNaughton, right, and Brigadier Worthington, left, July 1941.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3718201)

Churchill Armoured Vehicle Launched Bridge, Italy, ca 1943.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3225213)

Bulldozer with a pair of Churchill AVRE box girder bridge layers waiting to take part in an attack, 8 Feb 1945.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3225214)

Churchill AVRE box girder bridge layers waiting to take part in an attack, 8 Feb 1945.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3524783)

Bulldozer towing 'Crocodile' armoured vehicle of the 1st Fife and Forfar Yeomanry out of mud. Bathmen, Netherlands, 9 April 1945.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3607884)

Churchill Crocodile flamethrowing tank in operation, 1944.