Vision, Passion and Dedication – The Rebirth of a StuG 111 D
During the North African campaign of WW2 German supply chains shipped thousands of tons of equipment to support the German expeditionary force in North Africa. During May 1941 a Sturmgeschütz Ausf. D Self Propelled Assualt Gun (StuG 111 D) with the chassis number 90678 was part of a consignment shipped to North Africa to equip the Afrika Korps, this was one of only three ever made.
The StuG, extensively modified for tropical service was delivered to the Sonderverband ZbV288 Unit of the Afrika Korps and took part in heavy fighting as allied and axis forces fought to take control of Libya and Egypt. It was during this struggle that it was captured by British troops just outside El Alamein, found battle damaged and abandoned. The British shipped the StuG back to England for evaluation and tests. Following the war the StuG was used as a target on the ranges at Pirbright, Surrey, before being rescued for the Wheatcroft Collection by Kevin Wheatcroft. It had by this time been reduced to little more than a rusting chassis and was barely recognizable.
It was here that Jon Phillips, a dedicated military vehicle enthusiast with extraordinary engineering skills and knowledge came across the StuG. At this time there were only two other Sturmgeschütz Ausf. D Assualt Gun’s in existence. One is on display in the Swedish Tank Museum and the other forms part of a WW2 memorial near the Volokolamsk Highway, Volokolamsk, Moscow Oblast in Russia.
Jon Philips became the new owner of the StuG after trading his immaculately restored WW2 German Army Schwimmwagen, and on the 1st May 2013 he began the mammoth task of completely restoring it back to full working order. Over the following years Jon has hunted down and collected the parts needed to bring life to this outstanding piece of WW2 history. The result today is a testament to Jon’s commitment, passion and skills. The StuG attracts a growing army of followers who flock to see it at military shows. We are delighted that Jon will be appearing with his StuG at this year’s War and Peace Revival where it will no doubt prove very popular with visitors.
Jon has documented this impressive project on his Facebook pages and through a series of compelling videos which you can view by following the links below.
Video Part 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DAiVxRl0QGY
Video Part 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3P3L-W4vcdY
Video Part 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iftJoV93R3s