Military vehicles draw the crowds to Northamptonshire park

Lucy Sue tank featured in the film Fury with Cdt Will Paterson, Cpl Isabelle O'Brien, Cdt Ben Sanders and Cdt Michael Page of ATC 1101 Squadron during Wicksteed at War.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER NNL-150615-112131001
Lucy Sue tank featured in the film Fury with Cdt Will Paterson, Cpl Isabelle O'Brien, Cdt Ben Sanders and Cdt Michael Page of ATC 1101 Squadron during Wicksteed at War.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER NNL-150615-112131001

Tanks, Jeeps, and other military vehicles rolled into Wicksteed Park in Kettering over the weekend for a free family event.

Sponsored by the Military Vehicle Trust, the event combined military vehicle displays and re-enactor groups, with a record number of tanks on show.

Steve Bowens, Richard Snow, Elle Lambert and Klara Vizma both thirteen during Wicksteed at War.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER NNL-150615-111922001

Steve Bowens, Richard Snow, Elle Lambert and Klara Vizma both thirteen during Wicksteed at War.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER NNL-150615-111922001

Peter Clarke, one of the organisers, said: “It was organised by the national Military Vehicle Trust, through the South East Midlands branch which is based at Sywell.

“This year was the first time that we’ve had an educational day on the Friday, and hundreds of schoolchildren came.

“They got to talk to the owners of the vehicles and veterans from the Second World War.

“A lot of them were dressed as evacuees as well. Wicksteed Park laid on a special evacuee train as well to take them around the park.

Scorpion tanks during their display of Wicksteed at War.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER NNL-150615-112115001

Scorpion tanks during their display of Wicksteed at War.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER NNL-150615-112115001

“The main show was on Saturday and Sunday.

“One of the highlights was the mounted troop of FANYs – the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry. They were volunteers in the First World War who provided first aid just behind the trenches. They were on four horses and gave a display.

“John Griff, the announcer, had a hard time keeping a straight face commentating on that.

“The other highlight was the number of tanks we had, including Lucy Sue, a Sherman tank that took park in filming Fury with Brad Pitt, and it was still in its film paint job.”

There were hundreds of vehicles involved in the show, ranging from a lightweight folding bicycle used by parachutists, up to a Centurion tank which weighs 52 tons. They also covered a huge range of history right up to the present day with vehicles that have just been sold by the Army.

A display of the history of the Jeep was put on with help from sponsors Westaway Jeeps, and some of their modern alternatives.

As well as displaying the vehicles, some were also involved in mock battles.

Peter said: “On both days we had battles. On the Saturday the Germans won, but on the Sunday it was the Allies that won.”