The Weald Foundation was established to preserve, restore and maintain historic tanks and related military vehicles and equipment, principally from the First and Second World War and to educate the public about their history.
Established as a charitable trust in 2003, the Foundation oversees a rare and unique collection of important tanks, armoured and soft skin military vehicles. It is considered to be one of the finest working collections in the world.
The Foundation’s programme focuses on six key areas:
- To acquire and preserve First and Second World War military vehicles for the education of the public.
- To research and interpret original documents, record in film and in photographs the restoration of each vehicle, to produce literature on the history of the vehicles and related equipment for display to the general public.
- To promote and encourage the study and methods of restoration.
- To research the unit and therefore campaign history, where possible, of each vehicle and inform the public. This research encompasses interviews with veterans, archive and data study and step by step analysis of the vehicle itself - workshop archaeology.
- To rebuild and restore each vehicle to full authentic wartime working condition, with the exception of weapons that are de-activated for safety reasons.
- To utilise the collection for the benefit of the wider community through the running of education and training programmes at our facilities here in Kent, as well as schools and other sites.
Not only are the vehicles themselves important examples of military history, their restoration represents an important landmark in historic military vehicle restoration.
This level of restoration requires painstaking research and extraordinary attention to detail in all areas of the restoration process to achieve the correct end result. This can involve reproducing the largest or smallest parts, often hidden from sight, using the original methods of production, regardless of more modern and efficient methodologies. Our restoration allows these extremely important historic fighting vehicles to live again in original form thus preserved for future generations.