With the development of tanks during WWI and the corresponding armour-piercing bullet, the relationship of armoured vehicles and weapons to defeat them has created an escalation of ever more sophisiticated hardware, ammunition and techniques that are portrayed in the collection..
The anti-tank room provides a selection of weapons and ammunition which cover the individual, section and supporting anti-armour weaponry. From early anti-armour rifles such as the German Mauser of 1918 and Boys Anti-Tank Rifle, time has created a circle to the latest 0.5 inch BARRETT Anti Material Rifle (for use against soft skinned vehicles and light armour).
The attack on armour relies on one of three principles. Kinetic (high velocity) attack and the two main explosives; hollow charge and squash head. Examples of their effects on armour are exhibited.
Some well known weapons on display are the PIAT of WWII with hollow charge ammunition, to rifle discharged grenades. 2, 6 & 17 pounder guns with solid shot rounds (kinetic), and the recoilless 120mm BAT to WOMBAT series with High Explosive Squash Head (HESH) ammunition.
Rocket launched and light recoilless systems have been created out of development of the shaped (hollow) charge warhead to defeat armour, and there are many examples available.
The trailing wire Anti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGW) such as Vigilant, Swingfire and Milan of the 1960/70s have seen developments into much lighter 'fire and forget' guidance systems such as NLAW at section level and JAVELIN for Battalion support. The Guided Weapons use the hollow charge warhead principles.
Foreign systems include the RPG series and its development.
Battalion anti-tank weapons, which were part of the Support Weapons Wing at Netheravon, are merged with the individual and section systems to provide a very interesting collection of anti-armour defeating weapons and ammunition.