A GERMAN Panther Tank will be among the guest vehicle's taking part in arena displays at this year's Tankfest extravaganza.

Two Russian T-34 tanks, a Sherman Firefly tank and a Japanese Ha Go light tank will also be appearing at the event, set for The Tank Museum, Bovington, next month.

Museum curator David Willey said: "At Tankfest, The Tank Museum displays some of the finest running armour from its own collection.

"What makes this event extra special is our ability to attract some amazingly rare guest armour. For many of our visitors this will be a first opportunity to see these vehicles running."

The Second World War German Panther tank, lent by the French Tank Museum, will be running as part of the arena displays for the first time ever this year.

Considered to be one of the best tanks produced during World War II, the restoration of the Panther and its transportation across the English Channel has been funded by event sponsors World of Tanks.

A museum spokesman said: "The iconic Russian T-34/85’s are coming from the Cobbaton Collection in Devon and private collector John Sanderson.

"John Sanderson’s T34-85, came off the production line in 1944 and is thought to have been damaged during the Battle for Prague and then went on to fight at the Battle for Berlin.

"The Sherman Firefly comes from the Bastogne Barracks in Belgium, part of the War Heritage Institute. It was manufactured in the USA in 1942, delivered to Europe in 1943 and converted to a Firefly in early 1944.

"After the war, it was due to be scrapped, but avoided this fate and was recently restored to running order by the museum."

Only two operational Ha-Go tanks exist in the world and this will be the first time that one has ever run at Tankfest.

Around 2,300 of these were manufactured by the Japanese Empire for the Second World War, but less than 25 now survive and only two of them are in running order.

The Ha-Go on display is being lent by Oliver Barnham.

Meanwhile, The StuG III, Valentine DD and Centurion guest vehicles are all returning this year, and the Royal Netherlands Army is bringing the Cheetah PRTL and Boxer vehicles.

Vehicles from the British Army will also be on display.

Tankfest takes place June 28-30.

Visit tankmuseum.org for details.