Tank Chats with David Fletcher: A13

Hello everyone,

the Bovington museum invited back the retired British tank historian, David Fletcher, to make series of short clips, where he talks about tanks. The first tank to talk about is the British A13 cruiser.



I must say, I love the idea. Unlike WG EU’s Richard Cutland, who just reads a script and it’s blatantly obvious he has no knowledge of tanks, save for the one he served on, this man simply KNOWS. Very, very enjoyable.

32 thoughts on “Tank Chats with David Fletcher: A13

    • Dude, cutland just sucks. His movies are terribad compared to chieftain’s hacth. And what disturbs me the most are his hands, like he has some medical issue with them?

      • The Challengers stuff is fine. He’s not the best presenter in the world, not as natural as the Chieftain, but for a casual tank fan like me, his videos are informative and enjoyable. I’d rather have as much of this sort of stuff as possible, it by far the best WG output.

        • This I can agree with. Even with the awkward talking style they’re worthwhile and I’ve seen them all.

          • Agreed, its the best output from WG EU when it comes to videos…but that’s not saying much.
            Compared to the Chieftain’s Hatch, the Challenger is very meh.

      • I don’t mind the fact that Cutlands movies are 100% scripted and read of a board behind the camera since his eyes never look at the lens. Its like the C&C movies back in the day. None of em look at the camera either as they read of the board behind it. But yeah, he waves his arms around constantly. And its freaking annoying.

  1. I just saw it yesterday posted on tank reddit and I love it. David is like your grandfather talking about the war, really nice and loveable and yet he still knows everything about the tank off the top of his head.

    • Exactly this!

      Plus he’s so tiny, which makes him sooo cute – you just want to put him on your chimney and let him talk about talks whole evenings while smoking your pipe…:D

      I will definitely follow this !

    • I think it was back in 2003 when I rang Bovington to see if I could get some information on the steering of the SdKfz 8 Rad vehicles (8 wheelers). The switch put me straight through to David Fletcher who was so accommodating and informative. I’m glad he was awarded the MBE.

      Oh btw I rang Bovington from Australia.

      • That’s reassuring, I’m doing my Honours year for my history Degree at the moment and my thesis concept is partially based on something he mentioned in one of his books.

  2. Thought he was great in the 2012 “Operation Think Tank” videos. Hope he does more! Love how when you watch this it feels like he is simply having a conversation with you.

    • Yes, its much more enjoyable when its a conversation rather then a lecture.

      More, I will definitely follow the series.

      • Yes, the think tank panel was great! :)
        Really hoping WG could do something like that again, all in all a excellent panel the first time around, perhaps hard to top it, actually kinda surprising they had no Russians there (then again I guess WGUS was the organizer), so there was little talk about Soviet tanks (then again Zaloga could have covered that more, if needed).
        Especially David Fletcher and Kenneth Estes did make a good impression on me, both grandfather types I could have listened more to :)

        Definitely gonna subscribe to these, Fletcher has a great style, so much knowledge readily available, while at the same time he’s not pulling punches; if a tank was rubbish, he says so.

        Thanks for the tip!

  3. Did anyone else notice, that in the very first Cruiser photo they show in the film the tank has a German license plate?

      • WH was the prefix for all Wehrmacht Heer vehicles, followed by a number (WL was used for Luftwaffe vehicles, navy used WM for Wehrmacht Marine). Can’t find info on vehicles with 0 as first number, but those might be captured vehicles or vehicles not registered to a certain district.

          • That particular tank was the commanding officer’s of The Queen’s Bays. They were sent in to attack dug in AT guns at the woods near Huppy, accompanied by a couple of A9 Cruiser CS and two troops of Vickers Mk.VI. Predictably it didn’t go too well as the hidden German AT guns shredded them.

            The Bays had the tradition of naming their tanks after Grand National winners. I’ve long forgotten the name of this tank, but there’s a much better photo of it, and others involved at Huppy if you search the IWM achives online;


  4. Nice one… so much better than Richard Cutland.
    I already stopped watching him – he is just generic History channel guy and I am past that level.

  5. Fletcher is one of my absolute favorite historians.
    Can’t think of anyone that possess so much knowledge and has the gift to to share it in such an interesting and entertaining faction.

  6. Love that funny moustache! i remember him from a documentary. A really good and likeable person.

  7. David Fletcher has worked with tank history more and longer then most. If he says it is so. Its def so. His word is law. Its not without reason that when Discovery, BBC and National Geographic is making a military documentary with tanks in em… There is a 99% chance he is in it and they called him to talk about it. Cus they know he knows his shit.

  8. If you can get them his three vols on British tank development are a must

    Mechanised Force
    The Great Tank Scandal
    Universal Tank

    The Osprey vols he has done are good too – but a bit short

  9. Nice guy and also so very british :)

    I really had to laugh hard, as he said “It’s the best tank we had in 1940″. Poor, poor Tommies. I mean Pz III and IV were already borderline useless in their configuration during the Fall of France, but imagining to be a british tanker and having to use this… Oh me, oh my… At least it works within it’s tier ingame…