The landing craft, tank (or tank landing craft) was an amphibious assault craft for landing tanks on beachheads. They were initially developed by the British Royal Navy and later by the United States Navy during World War II in a series of versions. Initially known as the "tank landing craft" (TLC) by the British, they later adopted the U.S. nomenclature "landing craft, tank" (LCT).
The Mark 4 was slightly shorter and lighter than the Mk.3, but had a much wider beam (38 ft 9 in (11.81 m)) and was intended for cross channel operations as opposed to seagoing use. Better accommodation for tank crews was also made possible by the increased beam. It had a displacement of 586 tons and was powered by two 460 hp Paxman diesels. With a capacity of 350 tons, it could carry nine M4 Sherman or six Churchill tanks. Eight hundred and sixty-five Mk.4s were built, the largest LCT production in British yards.
When tested in early assault operations, like the unsuccessful Canadian commando raid on Dieppe in 1942, the lack of manoeuvring ability led to the preference for a shorter overall length in future variants, most of which were built in the United States.
The Landing Craft Tank (Rocket) or LCT(R) was developed from the British Mk.2 and Mk.3 Landing Craft Tank (LCT) during the Second World War. It was designed to saturate beaches with up to 1,066 RP-3 60 lb rockets prior to the landing of troops. Used by both British and U.S. forces, the craft saw service in the Normandy landings, the Mediterranean and the Far East.
Name: Cairns, Claude Cecil
Rank: Able Seaman
Missing since: 01-11-1944
Next of Kin:Son of Frederick and Dorothy Cairns, of Sutton.
Chatham Naval Memorial: 75-1
KIA Information: Known to have been killed in Vlissingen/Walcheren area.
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