Travelling by the Queen Elizabeth
Peter Foren writes: – “Having read with interest the recollection of the Queen Mary passengers, I am encouraged to set down a ‘potted’ version of my own slightly earlier journey, in hope of encouraging others who went out earlier still, in different circumstances, to come forward.”
June ‘2 – Gourock, of course, but the Queen Elizabeth, just back from her American conversion.
One of an advanced draft of around 200 detailed to move stores around to make ready for the other 15/17,000 to follow.
For one week we had virtually the run of the ship and a diet based on a bountiful American concept of feeding.
Then everything suddenly returned to normal when a loud-hailer from a launch arriving alongside invited us in no uncertain terms to ‘get off that ….. bridge’.
A destroyer escort for 24 hours then due south unescorted. 24 hours in Simon’s Town Bay – shore leave Officers only – and then shortly afterwards, the key moment. Turn left for M.E or straight on for Singapore.
Ironic moment ….. Ship’s radio ‘Jap submarines are reported to be operating in the Madagascan channel’ slight pause ‘We are about to enter the Madagascan channel’.
Safely to Port Tewfik around mid-July then steadily westwards to Tripoli – Algiers – Tripoli, then Salerno and steadily northwards.
Liap July ’45, Python March ’46, Demob Sept ’46 (Wed).
Still together, long may it last!
Peter Foren, Corporal HQ 10Corps.
‘LIAP – was Leave In Advance of Python’