March 12 (Mon) 1945, Alexandria, Egypt

A very full & comprehensive working-up gunnery program has been laid down for the coming week. This morning, all Midshipmen went, per truck & some very rough roads, to HMS Grebe, a small Fleet Air Arm Station south-west of Alex. Owing to unsettled weather & an unfavourable forecast we were unable to go up in any aircraft, as there was very little activity at all. However, we met some of the pilots who have cooperated with the ship in exercises, it being very interesting to hear their views of what went on, and were shown round some of the drome and the planes. Types on display were Martinet, (target-towing) Swordfish, & Seafire [Sea Spitfire].  There were several others such as Hurricanes, Avengers, & Wildcats on the ground in various stages of overhaul but we didn’t get much to delve into those.

March 12 1945 Spitfire

At the drinking session before dinner in the mess, I was very pleased to meet a couple of fellow countrymen [NZers]. After doing some Seafires of a squadron from HMS Attacker, at present refitting in Taranto [Southern Italy], after dinner & inspecting some aerial photos of HMS Newfoundland & [HMS] Nubian, we were returned to 35 Quay, by transport over even rougher roads.


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