Valentine Tanks

Location: 3.5 miles from Swanage
Description: 7 experimental amphibious tanks
Length: Unknown (fairly small)
Depth: 15 metres
Sunk: 1942

These tanks sank whilst practising for the D Day landings in Normandy. In 1942 these experimental tanks were fitted with canvas screens which could be raised or lowered pneumatically to allow them to float in the sea. They were powered by a drive system that enabled the engines to turn large propellers mounted at the rear when the tanks were in the water. Much of the experiments took place in Poole Bay but a few succumbed in rough conditions and sank.

The 2 tanks we visit are 100 metres apart and situated in flat, silty terrain and there is plenty of sea life surrounding them including resident conger eels. There is normally a navigational line between the two tanks. This dive is suitable for all divers but care must be taken with buoyancy as the bottom is easily disturbed.

References taken from Dive Dorset

Thanks to Phil Shinton for the photos and video of the Valentine tanks. (18.06.08)

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