I have to jump in here with a little history; the Vauxhall factory in Luton simply had the living shit bombed out of it by the Luftwaffe on multiple occasions during the war.
(From The BBC)
On the 75th anniversary of the World War Two bombing of Luton's Vauxhall factory, a Norfolk man has told the BBC about watching the attack as a boy.
Fred Morrad, 83, lived in Luton during the war, where his father was an aircraft inspector at the Percival Aircraft Company, based at the airport.
On 30 August 1940 at 16:50 BST, 51 bombs fell on the Vauxhall factory in about one minute, killing 39 people.Mr Morrad recalled how a friend's father died in the attack.
"My school friend Barry Pitkin lived about 300 yards along the road from me. His father worked at Vauxhall Motors which had been bombed. His father didn't come home," said Mr Morrad.
"It was during the school holidays, so when we went back nobody mentioned Barry's father's death. Young children then grew up very quickly."
Recalling the night of the attack, he said: "My mother and I, as we looked up, could see a formation of about 12 planes high in the sky. I suppose they were about two miles away, and 10,000ft or so up in the sky. I climbed on the coal bunker to watch.
"The aeroplanes kept steadily on although I remember one plane coming down as there were some fighters around them.
"When my father came across he told us he had been coming out of one of the hangars as a stick of bombs was dropped across the airfield close to him. He was blown back into the hangar by the blast."
Vauxhall archivist Andrew Duerden said: "The victims were aged between 15 and 71, including one woman, and 50 more were injured.
"The main area hit was the gasometer, which contained gas used in the heat treatment. Although the factory was back up and running in six days - the gasometer was out of action for weeks.
"Although Vauxhall was secondary to the Luftwaffe, if anything it was the other way round - the factory was very important to the war effort, building Bedford trucks, Churchill tanks and also did some fairly high engineering including development work on Sir Frank Whittle's jet engines."
Vauxhall Motors World War Two Production Statistics: Churchill A22 Infantry Tank - A portion 5,640 Churchill Tanks with 2,000 spare engines. After the loss of most its equipment at Dunkirk in May-June 1940, the British Army only had 100 tanks remaining. Vauxhall was given the task of designing and producing the A22 within a year. The pilot model was ready by November 1940, and the first fourteen production models came off the assembly line in June 1941. Production of the Churchill A22 was shared with Vauxhall by ten other companies. Vauxhall produced the majority of the parts which were then assembled by Vauxhall and the other companies under Vauxhall's guidance. It is unknown the number of actual A22s produced by Vauxhall or the other companies.
Other: 5 million sheet metal sides for jerrycans, four million rocket venturi tubes, 6-pounder armor piercing shells, and 750,000 steel helmets.
Vauxhall was instrumental in the building of the first 12 jet engines built in Britain. The Luton factory did 95% of the work on these first 12 engines.
Vauxhall also designed inflatable decoy trucks and string and canvas decoy aircraft. It also made tooling for the Hercules aircraft engine, and assisted in the development of the Mosquito, Lancaster, and Halifax aircraft. The GM subsidiary on mines, torpedoes, radiolocation equipment and bombs.
Bedford Subsidiary World War Two Production Statistics: (5,995) MW 1-1/2-ton 4x2 trucks, (52,247) QL 3-ton 4x4 lorries, 73,385 OY 3-ton 4x4 lorries, and 24,429 OX 3-ton 4x4 lorries
Back to 2021-finally got the gas tank out after lots of prying, wriggling and the indiscriminate use of some rather vulgar language .
The smell of the gas left in the tank is akin to the aromas emitted from a rope sandal worn by an Arab swineherd who has been been roaming the desert for the last year or two!
It doesn’t look too bad but any suggestions on how to clean and treat the inside would be much appreciated.