Watch: This peculiar D-Day tank could float on water

Watch military historian David Fletcher discussing the unusual Swimming Sherman tank, used by the allies during the Normandy landings

The rather odd machine was part of a group of innovative tanks developed by Major-General Sir Percy Hobart. Known as Hobart’s Funnies the tanks had unusual designs, specially made to address the unique challenges of beach-based warfare.

The amphibious DD Sherman was joined by a host of other ‘funnies’ including a flailing mine-clearing tank known as the ‘Crab’; a mortar-loaded tank which fired a 40lb bomb known as the ‘flying dustbin’; a carpet-laying tank which reinforced the beaches for heavy machinery and a tank which acted as a bridge for other vehicles to cross ravines.

This video, and many others exploring the collection can be found on the Tank Museum’s extensive YouTube channel


The Tank Museum

Bovington, Dorset

The Tank Museum in Dorset holds the world’s largest collection of tanks and armoured fighting vehicles. From the first tank ever built to the modern Challenger II, the Museum houses examples from 28 different countries; Our definitive collection comprises over 250 vehicles dating back to 1909. In our bursting programme…

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