Grand Slam bombs awaiting delivery

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Where: Unknown

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When: 07 January 1945

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“Grand Slam” Bombs awaiting delivery, 7 January 1945 (TWAM ref. 1027/5178).

‘Workshop of the World’ is a phrase often used to describe Britain’s manufacturing dominance during the Nineteenth Century. It’s also a very apt description for the Elswick Works and Scotswood Works of Vickers Armstrong and its predecessor companies. These great factories, situated in Newcastle along the banks of the River Tyne, employed hundreds of thousands of men and women and built a huge variety of products for customers around the globe.

The Elswick Works was established by William George Armstrong (later Lord Armstrong) in 1847 to manufacture hydraulic cranes. From these relatively humble beginnings the company diversified into many fields including shipbuilding, armaments and locomotives. By 1953 the Elswick Works covered 70 acres and extended over a mile along the River Tyne. This set of images, mostly taken from our Vickers Armstrong collection, includes fascinating views of the factories at Elswick and Scotswood, the products they produced and the people that worked there. By preserving these archives we can ensure that their legacy lives on.

(Copyright) We're happy for you to share this digital image within the spirit of The Commons. Please cite 'Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums' when reusing. Certain restrictions on high quality reproductions and commercial use of the original physical version apply though; if you're unsure please email [email protected].


Owner: Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 21826
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    optimal chicken

    • 07/Jul/2015 08:27:53

    I was curious about the number of heavy nuts and bolts at its end. I've found this on Wiki;

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    Yvan Demers

    • 18/Jul/2015 12:31:10

    Your wonderful capture was seen in Black & White Photos Add 1 – Comment 2

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    • 31/Jul/2015 09:20:01

    I believe that the explosive used was poured and due to the high speed that the bomb achieved during its descent those exposed nuts not only secured the detonating mechanism but provided solid attachment points to keep the tail surface attached...

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    optimal chicken

    • 31/Jul/2015 19:37:48 Yes I was wondering - that's a lot of nuts to keep a tail on..

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    • 27/Nov/2015 09:48:21

    Also one of the Grand Slam bombs was used as a static display at RAF Scampton's Main Gate until about 1958 when upon trying to lift it due to a road widening projectit was discovered to be too heavy for the small crane being used and upon closer examination discovered to be still full of Torpex. It was collected by the British military and detonated at the experimental test range at Shoeburyness and heard over a 10 mile radius. - abbr. from the Australian Armourers Association.

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    Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums

    • 27/Nov/2015 16:45:03 Great story - thank you!