The Royal Armoured Corps was engaged
in some of the fiercest fighting since
World War Two in combating the insurgency in Afghanistan. ‘Battlegroup Afghanistan’ tells the soldiers’ story in a poignant exhibition at the Tank Museum.
Working with the Tank Museum's curatorial and interpretation experts, our challenge was to change public perceptions of the work soldiers do and to show what life is really like for our forces in a hostile environment. Personal and inspiring stories from all ranks of soldier were placed at the heart of the exhibition. There are few interpretation graphics; instead, a 'Forward Operating Base' with authentic objects interprets day-to-day working, living and combat conditions.
Visitors enter the base and find themselves surrounded by the Afghan desert landscape.
They are immersed in the sights and sounds of life on operations (dogs barking, the thunder of a passing tank, gun fire). There is a tented dorm, duty watch station, living and survival equipment and even the 'thunder box' - an outdoor toilet. Opportunities to interact include trying on desert kit and there are weapons and a number of large armoured vehicles like Viking troop carriers to explore. All objects on display are authentic.
Hours of research and live interviews inform the exhibition. There are audio points made from old ammunition crates and field communication handsets that enable visitors to find out how soldiers cope with the physical and emotional demands of the campaign. There is front line film narrated by veteran broadcaster Kate Adie and videos of returning soldiers telling haunting tales of bravery.
Visitors have been inspired by the soldiers' courage and leave with a deeper understanding and new perspective on the conflict.
Imagemakers created the concept and final 3D, graphic and audio-visual designs for the scheme and selected and managed all contractors through to completion.
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