British Infantry Tank Mk.II »Matilda«
When the British convoy PQ1 was being unloaded at the Arkhangelsk docks in October 1941, the Russian workers saw the first samples of a tank that would play a dominant role in the upcoming battles on the Eastern Front.
For that time, the tank was heavily armoured, up to 78mm, and had a gun in the common 40mm range.
However, it was rather slow and its tracks proved slippy under the Russian winter conditions.
Anyway, the first Red Army tank regiments were equipped with the new tank still in winter and took part at the successful counter-offensive that stopped Hitler's attempt to seize Moscow.
Matilda's role during Shukov's »Operation Mars« was less lucky as many tanks ended destroyed or captured during the German counterstrike near Charkov (see bottom drawing).
In total, 1084 Matildas were sent to the Russian northern ports of which 918 reached their destination until August 1943.