Deborah and the War of the Tanks 1917
Author John A Taylor
Size 165mm x 240mm (6.5 x 9.5in)
Deborah is a British World War One Mark IV Tank, designated D51, which took part in one of the earliest tank battles, seeing action in both Passchendaele and Cambrai. Eighty years later, after six years of research using infra-red photos and metal detectors, the tank’s buried remains were rediscovered in 1998 by historian Philippe Gorczynski and excavated. John Taylor’s book tells the tale of the tank and its crew and tracks down their descendants to uncover a human story every bit as compelling as the military one.
The tank was taken out by a German field gun on November 20, 1917 near the village of Flesquieres. Four of the eight-man crew survived and were led to safety by 25-year-old Frank Heap who was eventually awarded the MC.
The four crew killed in action were re-interred in the British Cemetery at Flesquieres Hill where the tank is now a memorial.