The Collection

The collection priorities have evolved to highlight how vehicle technology was evolving before and during conflict around the globe.

Our starting point was German reconnaissance vehicles from the Second World War represented by a range of vehicles including the Büssing-Nag eight-wheeled armoured car (Sd.Kfz.232), the smaller four-wheeled Sd.Kfz.223 Ausf.A (1939), Sd.Kfz.222 Ausf.A (1941) and Sd.Kfz.261 Ausf.B (1943), the light armoured half-tracks Sd.Kfz.250 Ausf.A (1943) and later Sd.Kfz.250 Ausf.B (1944), the medium armoured half-track Sd.Kfz.251 Ausf.D (1944)

Heavy tracked vehicles include 8,8cm Jagdpanther 411 (1945) and Sturmgeschütz the main stay of antitank defence from 1943. These are supported by examples of the most important towed antitank guns 7,5cm Pak 40 and the outstanding 8,8cm Pak 43. Plus, a range of light vehicles providing support such as trucks, personnel vehicles, and motorcycles.

The German collection is now complete. A defined restoration plan with date lines is in place for all the remaining German vehicles yet to be restored.

The allure of restoring tanks from the First World War and the challenge of gathering exceedingly rare war machines from the old British Empire resulted in us adding two additional genres to the collection – WW I and the Empire Collection. The Foundation has completed restoration of a Renault FT and Renault TSF. For these 1918 vehicles an original tank transporter trailer has been acquired.

The Weald Foundation collection has been expanded with an eye to acquiring vehicles missing from the National collection that are considered unique or rare elsewhere in the world. From Australia we have a rare Local Pattern Carrier Mk I (1940), from South Africa two Reconnaissance Cars (Marmon-Herrington) Mk III (1941 and 1942) that were the predominate armoured car of the Allied forces in the period, and finally Indian Pattern Carrier (New Zealand)

The work never ends. Maintenance programmes, replacement with better or more original components, even complete rebuilds of engines and gearboxes is undertaken on every machine at some point. Correct storage of these vehicles allowing for the relative extremes of our climate is a constant challenge.