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The Vimoutiers Tiger - a history

Article about: by lebus12 On the first picture, it's me!(This picture is mine, but one time on the web, it's finished!) In the 60's-70's, I was every month in the Falaise pocket! Thank you Lebus for provid

  1. #51

    Arrow

    I've enjoyed many, many visits to the Tiger and probably the best was the last - in June 2017. We stopped on a very warm Saturday morning coming back from Villers-Bocage and had an impromptu picnic right next to the Tiger.

    We were quite alone - no-one else stopped to look at the tank. My wife is more of an art enthusiast so I asked how many Vermeers existed in the World ? About 31 or 32......she was quite impressed when I said there were 6 Tiger 1s and this was the only one left on a battlefield.

    Anyway, here she is before restoration......

    The Vimoutiers Tiger - a history

  2. #52
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    The Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyThe Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyThe Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyThe Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyI went there recently, the tank is now fenced off. I was disappointed to see the tank is well outside of the village of Vimoutiers, yet, I, as a tourist, drove two hours to see it, and I'm sure lots of others do as well. From a strictly tourism/economic point of view, this tank could earn the local economy 1000s of Euros a year. And yet, there it sits, gently rusting away in piece - on reflection it actually adds to the authenticity and impressiveness this piece when you see it. Compared to all the tourist tat you get at places like St Mere Eglise and Pegasus Bridge.

    Still, it is also sad to see this great beast neglected in the way it is.

    I think at the bottom of this, the French genuinely feel conflicted on how to maintain/promote the German infrastructure and equipment they have from WW2 (take also the U-Boat pens at St Nazaire, there the sub on display is a French 50s one, and the pens themselves lack any real info on the war-time use for which they were built). On the one hand, these things bring in tourists and revenue, on the other they are a reminder of defeat and occupation, whereas anything to do with D Day/the Liberation gets lavishly promoted and looked after (esp US stuff over anything GB!).

    Anyway, some pics of the tank from the recent visit....

  3. #53

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    was hoping to visit this next week but looks like i will not be able to travel now unfortunately

  4. #54

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    Quote by MG42UK View Post
    The Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyThe Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyThe Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyThe Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyI went there recently, the tank is now fenced off. I was disappointed to see the tank is well outside of the village of Vimoutiers, yet, I, as a tourist, drove two hours to see it, and I'm sure lots of others do as well. From a strictly tourism/economic point of view, this tank could earn the local economy 1000s of Euros a year. And yet, there it sits, gently rusting away in piece - on reflection it actually adds to the authenticity and impressiveness this piece when you see it. Compared to all the tourist tat you get at places like St Mere Eglise and Pegasus Bridge.

    Still, it is also sad to see this great beast neglected in the way it is.

    I think at the bottom of this, the French genuinely feel conflicted on how to maintain/promote the German infrastructure and equipment they have from WW2 (take also the U-Boat pens at St Nazaire, there the sub on display is a French 50s one, and the pens themselves lack any real info on the war-time use for which they were built). On the one hand, these things bring in tourists and revenue, on the other they are a reminder of defeat and occupation, whereas anything to do with D Day/the Liberation gets lavishly promoted and looked after (esp US stuff over anything GB!).

    Anyway, some pics of the tank from the recent visit....
    So glad I visited 2 years ago and climbed all over it

    Nick
    "In all my years as a soldier, I have never seen men fight so hard." - SS Obergruppenfuhrer Wilhelm Bittrich - Arnhem

  5. #55

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    Me... Young !

    The best Militaria forum in France is here : http://deutsch-militaria.forumactif.us/

  6. #56
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    Default

    Quote by MG42UK View Post
    The Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyThe Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyThe Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyThe Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyI went there recently, the tank is now fenced off. I was disappointed to see the tank is well outside of the village of Vimoutiers, yet, I, as a tourist, drove two hours to see it, and I'm sure lots of others do as well. From a strictly tourism/economic point of view, this tank could earn the local economy 1000s of Euros a year. And yet, there it sits, gently rusting away in piece - on reflection it actually adds to the authenticity and impressiveness this piece when you see it. Compared to all the tourist tat you get at places like St Mere Eglise and Pegasus Bridge.

    Still, it is also sad to see this great beast neglected in the way it is.

    I think at the bottom of this, the French genuinely feel conflicted on how to maintain/promote the German infrastructure and equipment they have from WW2 (take also the U-Boat pens at St Nazaire, there the sub on display is a French 50s one, and the pens themselves lack any real info on the war-time use for which they were built). On the one hand, these things bring in tourists and revenue, on the other they are a reminder of defeat and occupation, whereas anything to do with D Day/the Liberation gets lavishly promoted and looked after (esp US stuff over anything GB!).

    Anyway, some pics of the tank from the recent visit....
    As i posted earlier the Tiger is to be moved to the French Tank Museum at Saumur where it will be revamped , having said that it was fenced off prior to moving about a year ago and is still sat there .

    Once it comes back it will go into the centre of Town as the local Mairie realise it is the Towns major tourist attraction and they want ot where they can keep it more secure and also bring some revenue from Tourists into the centre of the Town .
    The gates of hell were opened and we accepted the invitation to enter" 26/880 Lance Sgt, Edward Dyke. 26th Bn Northumberland Fusiliers , ( 3rd Tyneside Irish )

    1st July 1916

    Thought shall be the harder , heart the keener,
    Courage the greater as our strength faileth.
    Here lies our leader ,in the dust of his greatness.
    Who leaves him now , be damned forever.
    We who are old now shall not leave this Battle,
    But lie at his feet , in the dust with our leader

    House Carles at the Battle of Hastings

  7. #57
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    Good to hear in a way, but as I said in my post, it was probably the most 'authentic' thing we saw from the Normandy campaign in terms of its not being commercialised or spoilt by the kind of tat shops and souvenirs etc. you see in other places where famous sites/things have become a major tourism draw.

  8. #58

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    I'm sure when the restoration is done at Saumur, it will be put on display back in Vimoutiers.

    She deserves to be there.

  9. #59

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    Will be there the end of September !

  10. #60

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    Is it still there?

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