The rescue of an unsung D-Day hero, a vast hulk of a ship which carried unfathomably brave soldiers, tanks and other heavy armoured vehicles onto the Normandy beaches and helped altered the course of World War II.
Artelia was first introduced to LCT 7074 by the National Museum of the Royal Navy (NMRN) in 2014, when she was lying semi-derelict and sunk at her moorings at East Float Dock, Birkenhead. Following the Second World War, she had been decommissioned and later converted into a floating nightclub.
As the last remaining Landing Craft Tank from D-Day, NMRN compiled a bid to save her for the nation and with the help of a grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund, Artelia project managed the complex salvage operation to refloat her and transport her by sea to Portsmouth Naval Base for restoration.
Since 2015, LCT has resided in the enormous ship fabrication hall in which the Royal Navy’s two new aircraft carriers were built, undergoing an extensive £1.3 million repair and conservation programme, supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF). She has been restored to her original state, including an external paint finish which brings back the original disruptive pattern used for camouflage and replacement guns and rocket launchers.
In August 2020, the Artelia team led a highly complex and fraught mission to land the 220 tonne, 59 metre World War II craft on the beach at Southsea and transport her by self-propelled modular transporters through the streets of Southsea to her final home outside the D-Day Story Musuem. A truly amazing sight we think you’d agree when you watch our video.
LCT 7074 is now installed under her protective canopy at the D-Day Story where visitors can climb aboard and explore the vast tank deck, complete with two veteran World War II tanks – a Sherman and a Churchill.