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News from a wargamer with a special interest in the military history of the Balkans. It mainly covers my current reading and wargaming projects. For more detail you can visit the web sites I edit - Balkan Military History and Glasgow & District Wargaming Society. Or follow me on Twitter @Balkan_Dave
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Wednesday 26 April 2023

Royal Engineers Museum

While I was in Chatham on Sunday, it was an excellent opportunity to visit the Royal Engineers Museum in Gillingham. It was initially used as the electrical engineers' school before becoming the museum's home in 1987. It is one of only three military or regimental museums in the country to hold the status of an outstanding collection of national and international significance. With 50,000 exhibits, it is easy to see why.

Outside the museum, there is a significant collection of armoured engineering vehicles.

Inside the museum is arranged chronologically, starting with medieval fortifications and quickly moving on to the first formal engineer regiment. The museum's pride and joy is the Waterloo map that Wellington is supposed to have used. However, a distinguished Napoleonic historian believes it is a forgery. There are also uniform exhibits of the period.

The Victorian era included a couple of famous engineers. John Chard VC gets a display case of exhibits from his defence of Rorke's Drift. He does look a bit like Stanley Baker!

The other is 'Chinese' Gordon or Gordon of Khartoum. He also looks a bit like Charlton Heston!

Moving on, we get to the important part, the Balkans. Gallipoli and Salonika in WW1.

Lots on WW2, which is where armoured and other vehicles appeared. Although the most iconic is mine clearing in the Western Desert.

They even have a V2. Smaller than I imagined.

And I did like the model railway.

That just leaves the modern period, including several Falklands exhibits, including a Harrier.

Overall, an excellent museum. Well worth the effort.


  1. Never knew that existed, so thanks! Plan for next football season when my team plays Gillingham!!

  2. I suspect there would probably little time left for watching football 😉

    1. Certainly needs at least 90 minutes - the museum that is!