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Exercise 5 — The Tank Museum, Bovington – Home of the Caterpillar Machine Gun Destroyer

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Read the following text about The Tank Museum in Bovington and decide what verb forms should be used in gaps 1-10.

The Tank Museum, Bovington – Home of the Caterpillar Machine Gun Destroyer

.......... (1. be not/ it) .......... for a quirk of history, the world’s largest collection of tanks might today be known as the Caterpillar Machine Gun Destroyer Museum. Either that or the WC Museum. In an effort to keep the first prototypes a secret during the First World War, the committee in charge of its development considered a number of names that wouldn’t arouse suspicions about the true nature of the new war machine. ’Water Carrier’ .......... (2.moot) as one alternative but its acronym was considered inappropriate. Instead, the ’Tank’ was born.

The genesis of today’s Tank Museum in Bovington, Dorset, dates back to 1923 when the writer Rudyard Kipling suggested that more should be done to protect the damaged tanks that .......... (3. salvage) at the end of the First World War. A shed .......... (4. find) and the armoured vehicles that were collected here became the basis of what was originally known as the Bovington Tank Museum when it opened in 1947.

Bovington .......... (5. be) an army training area since 1899 and was opened in 1916 to train tank and heavy machine gun crews for combat in France. The exhibitions in today’s museum tell the story of armoured warfare and the history of the tank from the First World War to the present day. The museum’s six display halls and ten themed exhibitions contain more than 300 vehicles .......... (6. cover) all the major wars of the twentieth century. One of the exhibits traces the life of T.E. Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia), who served with the Tank Corps at Bovington and lived at Nearby Clouds Hill, now .......... (7. own) by the National Trust.

The Tank Story Hall contains the most important tanks and Armoured Fighting Vehicles (AFV) in history with a supporting collection housed in a multimedia exhibition. Famous individual tanks on display in the hall include Little Willy. Little Willy was the prototype of the Mark I, which subsequently became the world’s first tracked armoured vehicle to enter combat at the Battle of the Somme in 1916.

Other famous tanks include the German Tiger 131, the only working example of a Tiger in the world and restored to working order at Bovington’s workshops after .......... (8. capture) by the British during the Second World War in Tunisia. Tigers .......... (9. heavily armour) with powerful weapons and gained an aura of invincibility when rounds from a 75mm artillery gun bounced off the side of one when fired a distance of just 50m. Chief among the modern tanks on display is Challenger 2, Britain’s most recent frontline tank, which saw action in both the Balkans and Iraq, and played an important role in the capture of Basra by British Forces.

Rain or shine, there are regular outdoor displays of tanks in action in the Kuwait Arena where visitors can watch both veteran and modern tanks .......... (10. put through) their paces with accompanying thundering engines, smoke, explosions and expert commentary.

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