Why The "C" In Our Main Battle Tanks?

John_D

Old-Salt
In a proper, decent, British, cricket-fearing Army such as like we used to have in the olden days, equipped with fine weapons such as the SLR, Vigilant and Wombat, it was clearly understood by the veriest new chum that British AFVs were named according to an Immutable Scheme of Tradition.

Tanks began with "C", and should have a bit of a warry flavour: Churchill, Comet, Charioteer, Centurion, Caernarvon, Conqueror, and the very latest thing, Chieftain.

Medium recce vehicles and things on common chassis began with "S", and sounded a bit like Bedouin sons of the desert sweeping in over the sands, or at least somethign vaguely semitic or deserty: Saladin, Saracen, and the new-fangled Scorpion, Scimitar, Samaritan, Spartan, Striker, Samson, Sultan.

Self-propelled artillery was slightly more complicated, as there were two naming traditions, one to use names beginning with "A" (Avenger, Archer, Alecto) and the other to use names of clerical appointments (Priest, Bishop, Sexton). Fortunately someone had the brilliant idea of combining the two in Abbott.

Since those happy far-off days, when women cooked daily and every man owned his own pub, the AFV naming system has fallen into a sad state of confusion and muddle.

Imagination seems to have failed to provide any more names for tanks beginning with "C", so Challenger 2 is in fact the third British AFV to bear the name.

The question of recce vehicle names has been postponed by taking an unconscionable amount of time to produce a CVR(T) replacement -- there have been seven tries, according to some counts -- and giving the projects tedious alphabet-soup designations like VERDI, TRACER and FRES. AFVs provided through a frothing gallimaufry of UORs have been given silly names after assorted kinds of cats and dogs, and mostly kinds that are not even native to the UK.

The worst news of all, though, is in the shameful failure to correctly name the current generation of SP artillery. AS-90 is not a name, it is an alphanumeric designation, and if we are going to call our AFVs by such dull designation we might as well be American. Clearly, in order to preserve both the "A" letter and clerical naming traditions, the AS-90 in service should have been designated as Archimandrite. The failure to do so is unforgiveable. To my mind the whole lamentable story of the decline of British defence can be traced directly to this one decision.

All the best,

John.
 
AS 90 is called Braveheart isnt it
 
llech said:
BenghaziBandit said:
I worked on the 'Black Prince', any others beginning with 'B'?
Was that actually adopted or did WW2 end before it was introduced?
A Churchill with a Comet Turret, infanrty tank, the last one really, never went into service because the Centurion was deemed a better all round

I think a couple of Black prince were sent to Korea
 
Tropper is on the left side of the trench taking a bollocking from the Officer type. Even though it was the Officer types fault.
Officer: WTF tropper
Tropper: Nig, Feck off. I remember when Centurion was a rank not a tank. No wait, Hang on! Ive got an Idea!




Best of British to you all!

SK
 
SKJOLD said:
Tropper is on the left side of the trench taking a bollocking from the Officer type. Even though it was the Officer types fault.
Officer: WTF tropper
Tropper: Nig, Feck off. I remember when Centurion was a rank not a tank. No wait, Hang on! Ive got an Idea!




Best of British to you all!

SK
Thats not me its me Dad
 
BenghaziBandit said:
I worked on the 'Black Prince', any others beginning with 'B'?
I worked on the development of MCT on Spartan, and the name we gave it began with B, Bag of Bollocks!
 
Hello tropper66,

as far as I know,Black Prince was a number of prototypes only which never entered service,I have never heard of them going to Korea,although Churchills were there.
I was under the impression that the turret was also different to that on the Comet,being designed for the large 17 pounder while the Comet had the shorter "77mm".

Though having just looked at Wikipedia,they are saying Black Prince did go to Korea.
I shall have to dig some books out to check later.
It would be very interesting to know how they performed if they did go.


tangosix.
 
tangosix said:
Hello tropper66,

as far as I know,Black Prince was a number of prototypes only which never entered service,I have never heard of them going to Korea,although Churchills were there.
I was under the impression that the turret was also different to that on the Comet,being designed for the large 17 pounder while the Comet had the shorter "77mm".

Though having just looked at Wikipedia,they are saying Black Prince did go to Korea.
I shall have to dig some books out to check later.
It would be very interesting to know how they performed if they did go.


tangosix.
I was giving this info from my vague rememberances of my times in Bovy , and was told that there were some used in Korea , but I most certainly wont swear to it, just gave it as an interesting footnote. And I believe you are right about the turret, but I was only giving a pretty loose discription of the Black Prince when I posted, Ill get the Books out if anyone wants a full technical rundown, and I am quit surprised that there is a Wikki referance to it. but if you want to see me in full OCD mode lets talk about Tigers LOL
 

BuggerAll

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
I have heard that the Challenger was originally going to be called the 'Choirboy' because it had been well and truly fukced by Vickers
 
BuggerAll said:
I have heard that the Challenger was originally going to be called the 'Choirboy' because it had been well and truly fukced by Vickers
Blame the Iranians for that one
 

BuggerAll

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
tropper66 said:
BuggerAll said:
I have heard that the Challenger was originally going to be called the 'Choirboy' because it had been well and truly fukced by Vickers
Blame the Iranians for that one
You mean it should have been called the 'Talabeh' on the grounds that it was fukced bt Mullahs.
 
An excellent thread thank you all I knew about the C for Cruiser and always liked the very Apt names of the CVRT range but Gentlemen your insight has enlightened me. :study:
 
The_Ow_of_Now said:
An excellent thread thank you all I knew about the C for Cruiser and always liked the very Apt names of the CVRT range but Gentlemen your insight has enlightened me. :study:
We, the Tank loving OCD weirdos of ARRSE aim to please

Next time ask me about Tigers
 
Back in the mid-80s, when there was some talk of the UK going into joint development of a new MBT with the French, there was a meeting at GIAT in Paris, at which one of the subjects under discussion was what to name the project.
One of the Brits present, mindful of the 'tradition of naming our MBTs 'something beginning with 'C'', suggested ...




Crecy.


The French did not think this was really apt!!
 
Trackpen said:
Back in the mid-80s, when there was some talk of the UK going into joint development of a new MBT with the French, there was a meeting at GIAT in Paris, at which one of the subjects under discussion was what to name the project.
One of the Brits present, mindful of the 'tradition of naming our MBTs 'something beginning with 'C'', suggested ...




Crecy.


The French did not think this was really apt!!
Do you mean the MBT80 if so it was the then West Germans
 

seaweed

LE
Book Reviewer
RIP
And where would you all be if a naval officer hadn't had the decency to invent tanks for you? Still on horseback?
 

BenghaziBandit

War Hero
I worked on both the Black Prince and the early Cent at Lulworth on trials.
It was not a Comet turret, see first bit of Trials report.
The BP was not very good compared with the Cent, six cents were sent to Europe just before WW2 ended but did not go into action.
I don't believe the BP went to Korea, we had enough Cents at the time.
If it is readable here is Trials copy of BP gunnery trials.
 

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