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Author Topic: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer  (Read 21650 times)

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Offline CommanderChuff

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #16 on: December 02, 2015, 10:27:23 »
The guns at Shephards Well are recorded in the battery war diaires and other sources as being:

2 SHR   05SHB   12inch How - Cleo   
Mar1940:  Formed in Dover with intention for France   
Jul1940: to Stallingborough, Grimsby.
04Sep1940: Catterick - Canterbury
10Sep: Train Z - Catterick to Redhill and Ashford "   
08 Sep1940;  Shepherdswell, EKR, Dover.   
Shepherdswell, 24Sep - in action   
Nov1940: covered St Margaerts Bay to Dungeness.
21May1941:  guns calibrated here."

2 SHR   05SHB    12inch How - Sheba   
Mar1940:  Formed in Dover with intention for France   
Jul1940: to Stallingborough, Grimsby.
04Sep1940: Catterick - Canterbury
10Sep: Train Z - Catterick to Redhill and Ashford
08 Sep1940; Eythorne, EKR, Dover.   
Shepherdswell, EKR Dover 24Sep - in action
Nov1940: covered St Margarets Bay to Dungeness.
21May1941:  guns calibrated here.

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Offline TowerWill

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #15 on: August 18, 2015, 23:11:08 »
I wonder which gun would have been stabled in the Gun Road,Shepherdswell down sidings.In the 1970s we used this to store crippled coal wagons.From here a train could either get out onto the main line and Lydden Tunnel or the EKLR with just a shunt back up the Long Sidings.Two locos would have been required for certain shunts though.It was easy to make shunting cock ups at Shepherdswell as i found out.

Offline HERB COLLECTOR

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #14 on: August 16, 2015, 22:19:47 »
© IWM (H 6089) 'Boche-Buster', a 250-ton 18-inch railway gun, Catterick, 12 December 1940. The gun later travelled down to Kent to take up position at Bishopsbourne on the Elham to Canterbury Line for the duration.
© IWM (H 8314) The 18-inch railway gun 'Boche-Buster' and crew outside Bourne Park Tunnel, at Bishopsbourne in Kent, 21 March 1941.
© IWM (H 9448) The 18-inch railway gun 'Boche-Buster' fires from a cutting near Bishopbourne in Kent, 7 May 1941.
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Offline Sentinel S4

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #13 on: July 18, 2011, 14:57:43 »
Bourne Park Tunnel is on the remains of the Elham Valley Railway. It is just on the Bridge, village that is, side of Bishopsbourne Station. The station is in prive hands so please don't go there. The best thing is to GE the site and find the farm track that will take you to the road bed. From there you could, two years ago, walk the length of the tunnel. Take a torch as it is on a curve and there are holes in the cess, the bit either side of the track.
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Offline JohnG

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #12 on: October 30, 2010, 18:26:01 »
Hi All,  Many years ago I was given an album of aeial photographs taken in 1941, they were taken to see how effective the camouflage was.  When Langdon Battery was being closed down all the papers were taken out and being burnt, Col Arnold picked up the album and took it away, he lated gave it to me along with the battery war diary.  The photo of the spur at Charlton Park is in the album,  I have looked at it and wonder if it is a decoy as it is so obvious, can you see any railway lines coming off the mainline and into the covered area?
JohnG

Offline Leofwine

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #11 on: September 27, 2010, 22:29:41 »
Another one from Kent at War by Bob Ogley:

The 18 inch Mobile Channel Gun on the Southern Railway at Dover.


I assume this is "Boche Buster."

Larger version: http://www.flickr.com/photos/22124479@N03/5031243654/in/set-72157624857451095/
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Offline LenP

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #10 on: September 27, 2010, 22:00:42 »
The 18" barrel at Shoeburyness (reply #8) still exists and is located at the Royal Artillery HQ at Larkhill in Wiltshire. It is featured in the August 2010 issue of the Railway Magazine. It is one of only 12 rail guns still in existence, it is the largest calibre artillery piece surviving in the world and is also the heaviest railway vehicle in the country.

Offline TowerWill

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2010, 10:02:32 »
Though this story strays over the border into Sussex it comes from Spike Milligan's book "ADOLF HITLER My Part In His Downfall" page 103.According to Spike there was a 12 inch cannon mounted on a railway bogey with eight wheels and pulled by an engine.It was shunted back and forth along the South Coast wherever the German invasion threatened.The gun crew lived in a converted railway carriage.Late night if short of fags they'd drive the whole train gun and all to Hailsham station,nip into "The George",a quick pint,ten Woodbines,then back again.Having previously worked on the railways for many years i can well believe this happening.It was not unknown for the driver to stop the train(non passenger)so that we could pick apples to give an example.

seafordpete

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #8 on: March 23, 2010, 09:29:03 »
According to the information that the RCA museum sent me they operated as far as Hastings at times

michaeljohn

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2010, 20:49:51 »
Thought you may be interested in my late fathers memories of the Bosch Buster.

Gunner Peglar was No. 9 the gun layer, I can remember some of the stories but do not know how accurate my interpretations are!

The shells weighed 1 1/4 tons and the barrel 98 tons? the barrel was wire bound.

With a charge and a half the blast would turn the stations guttering inside out.

Aiming at the target his calulations were the log tan angle of sight is equal to ..........the differerence.......... at arms length his closed fist would measure 3 degrees.

Shunting diesels were more accurate, wire cables were used to anchor to concrete foundations.

Front and rear gangs competed against each other on the hydraulic jacks with the losing teams task becoming harder.

White hydraulic fluid often leaked.

My father appears in a photo in a book by Ian V Hogg, The Guns 1939-45 page 122.

I have other pictures (somewhere) of this gun.




Offline unfairytale

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2010, 21:44:11 »
In 1975 Lieutenant-Colonel Cleeve: The guns first commander in WW1 tried to locate the gun. An 18" barrel was found at Shoeburyness but this later turned-out not to be the one from Boshebuster. The barrel seems to be missing!
When you've got your back to wall, there's only one thing to do and that's to turn around and fight. (John Major)
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Offline unfairytale

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2010, 20:44:05 »
It arrived at Bishopsbourne in February 1941. The journey from Catterick took 43 hours! It was never called upon to engage the enemy although it was often shown-off to visiting V.I.Ps.
 It's mountings were melted down in the early 1960s at the Royal Arsenal, Woolwich.
When you've got your back to wall, there's only one thing to do and that's to turn around and fight. (John Major)
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Offline unfairytale

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2010, 20:37:01 »
The Bishopsbourne tunnel was its wartime home and Bishopsbourne Railway Station was the Battery HQ for the 11th Super Heavy Battery, Royal Artillery.
When you've got your back to wall, there's only one thing to do and that's to turn around and fight. (John Major)
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Offline unfairytale

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2010, 10:00:47 »


Shown at the entrance to Bishopsbourne Tunnel with it's ammunition wagon and deisel loco.
When you've got your back to wall, there's only one thing to do and that's to turn around and fight. (John Major)
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Offline david

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Re: Boche Buster - 18" Howitzer
« Reply #2 on: January 25, 2009, 13:27:52 »
According to this website:
http://www.barham-kent.org.uk/World%20War%20II.htm

Quote
Four brick magazine stores were built into the cutting north of Bishopsbourne and steps were cut into the banks either side of the southern portal of the tunnel which then housed the gun.

The bridge over Railway Hill, Barham was strengthened by huge timber baulks to support the weight of the 250 ton gun which was moved up and down the line to suitable points as it could only be fired parallel with the track.   The meandering railway allowed it to sweep virtually the whole south east corner of Kent thus enabling it to bombard any
 invasion force.   A short spur built into a field north of Barham gave the gun additional directions which included cover of Pegwell Bay near Ramsgate.
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