Exhibition: The Somme's Secret Weapon - Livens Large Gallery Flame Projector

Discussion in 'Military History and Militaria' started by fairmaidofperth, Jun 3, 2011.

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  1. Following on from the recent Channel 4 programme "The Somme's Secret Weapon", should anyone be in the Somme for a battlefield tour in the next six months the following exhibition may be of interest.


    Breathing Fire. Le dragon de la Somme - Future Exhibitions - Exhibitions - Official site of Historial


    An exhibition that tells for the first time the story behind the Livens Large Gallery Flame Projector.

    Employed only ten times during the war – nine of which were on the Somme – this bizarre weapon has been overlooked by historians. The machine was 19 metres long, 40 centimetres wide, and weighed 2.5 tonnes. Deployed from a tunnel beneath No Man’s Land by a specially-trained crew of seven, it fired a jet of flaming oil 100 metres long over the German trenches: the strangest, rarest and most horrifying weapon of the Great War.

    In May 2010 historians and archaeologists excavated a section of the British trenches near the village of Mametz in search of the remains of a Flame Projector believed to have been abandoned underground in late June 1916, just before the Battle of the Somme.
    The results were extraordinary, and for the first time for almost 100 years some of the original parts found in 2010 can be viewed alongside a specially-commissioned replica constructed by local students of vocational training centres.

    A special screening of the film Breathing Fire. Le Dragon de la Somme will be shown at the opening of the exhibition (16 June at 6pm).

    Curator: Peter Barton, historian
     
  2. oldbaldy

    oldbaldy LE Moderator Good Egg (charities)
    1. Battlefield Tours

  3. Thx OB,

    I intend to include this as part of the next ARRSE B'field tour in October. There will be a complete, life size, replica of the machine on dislplay as well.

    Our next archeological /historical project goes live on Friday. It will be a long term surface and subsurface study of a major part of the Somme battlefield. More news later in the week. For those interested - watch the BBC news on Friday!

    Regards

    FM
     
  4. oldbaldy

    oldbaldy LE Moderator Good Egg (charities)
    1. Battlefield Tours

    The BBC buildup to the dig:
    BBC News - WWI underground: Unearthing the hidden tunnel war
     
  5. jim24

    jim24 Book Reviewer