Received this little beauty as a birthday gift from my sons. The Dinky Meccano Centurion Tank was produced from 1954-70 and is painted in a basic military green with some decals and has black rubber tracks.
With design starting in 1943 The Centurion was the culmination of British knowledge in tank and anti-tank warfare which resulted in a “universal tank” that had the ability to take on the top German tanks of the time, most famously the ‘Tiger’ family of tanks.
With the first Centurions not appearing until 1945, they were too late to take on any German tanks WW2 combat and would have to wait until the Korean War to for their first combat.
Providing sterling service in Korea, Centurions were soon in service with New Zealand and Australia, with some of the Original New Zealand Tanks coming out of British stocks from Hong Kong still bearing the scars of the Korean war
A design that proved its self to be highly adoptable, the Centurion has proved its self to arguably be the best tank of the 20th century, serving with the British Army well into the 1970s until replaced by the chieftain, with some specialist versions continuing to serve the British until the 1990s. Also served with the following nations
- New Zealand
- United Kingdom
Used by India to good effect in 1965 in the Battle of Assal Uttar. Six Pakistani armoured regiments equipped with American M47 and M48 Patton tanks were opposed by three Indian armoured regiments, one of which was equipped with 45 Centurion tanks. The Centurion proved to be more than a match for the America made tanks.
One Australian Centurion, 169041, was used in a test of a Atomic Bomb, withstood the blast, was decontaminated and subsequently nicknamed The Atomic Tank. It would serve for another 23 years, including 15 months on operational service in Vietnam. Hit buy a RPG in a ambush in May 1969 , the crew in the turret were all wounded by shrapnel with one crewman requiring Casevac, with the others remaining in the still battle-worthy tank, which is now located at Robertson Barracks, Darwin.