The RAF’s fl eet of AEC tankers played a critical role in refuelling bombers during World War Two. Martin Howdle has spent many hours restoring one of the few examples left

AEC 0854 Fuel Tankers were used by the RAF in World War Two with the capacity of the tank almost identical to that of a Lancaster bomber

Classic military vehicle collector Martin Howdle knew the moment he set eyes on the imposing hulk of a World War Two-era petrol tanker that he wanted to buy it. However, after initially being told the owner would never part with it, Martin waited a year before asking if it was for sale. The answer was no. “I thought that was the end of it,” he said. “But a friend knew the guy and said I should persevere. A few days later (the owner) came back asking if I’d like to go have a look, and that was where it started.”

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