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McGregor's Grizzlies

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  • Hanno Spoelstra
    *-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-* From: Peter Brown Hi All! Sorting out some old papers I came on this letter from the man who imported
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 25, 1999
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      From: "Peter Brown" <pwbrown@...>

      Hi All!
      Sorting out some old papers I came on this letter from the man who imported
      the Grizzlies into the UK from Portugal.
      I was asking after hull and WD numbers but as far as I can see I did not
      follow this up.
      May interest you though.
      Smile on!
      Peter

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      IAN McGREGOR (Defence)
      MILITARY FIGHTING VEHICLES, ARTILLERY, FIREARMS AND AMMUNITION
      Fron Ganol, Hirwaen, Llanbedr D.C., Rhuthun, Clwyd LL15 1TA, North Wales,
      U.K.

      To - Mr. P.W.Brown

      29th October 1985

      Dear Mr Brown,

      I have imported and sold forty nine Grizzly tanks to date, and as far as I
      am aware the hull numbers were in the 188 range. No 1 is parked at Charley
      Mann's Museum, and is the property of a policeman, called Harvey from Looe.

      From memory the highest number is 181, and this has probably gone to the
      M.O.D. As far as I can make out the hull numbers do not relate to the serial
      numbers.

      I have sent one to Warsaw Museum, No 160252 (Hull No:59) and have here
      No:119 serial no: 163943.

      If my memory serves me right, Grizzlys were made from September to December
      43, and the first were smooth sided, and the last were cast with swells over
      the ammo bins. It can be seen that a retro-fitted set of plates, was welded
      on some tanks with smooth sides, presumeably before the last mould was
      produced.

      I would suspect that your serial number run will include all sorts of other
      production as well.

      I know that the Grizzlys were kept in Montreal as training tanks, and sold
      to the Portuguese in the early sixties, they used them up to the revolution
      in 73, and I bought most of the gun tanks in 83. There are still at least
      eighty Kangaroos left in Portugal, which are again Grizzly based, I have not
      examined these closely, but hope to shortly.

      The hull number on a Grizzly is stamped under the distinctive "G" foundry
      mark on the front plate. It is usualy painted over and for this reason a
      digit is often missed.

      With the high number of surviving Grizzlys, I would be surprised if any saw
      active service, although I have seen machine gun spang marks on several.

      If you give me a ring I can tell you where quite a lot have gone to, and you
      should be able to gather more data.

      I believe that we have some plates down south, that we removed from tanks
      that were sold to the M.O.D.

      I hope this is of some use, and remain,

      Yours Sincerely,

      Ian McGregor.

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