May 9 (Weds) 1945, Manus, Admiralties/Papua New Guinea

IWM A27859 Sunday Divisions
Prayers after Sunday Divisions on a carrier, Feb 1945. Image copr. IWM A27859.

Sunday Routine with prayers on the QD [Quarterdeck], then pipe down, shore leave being granted to a watch & a half. “Hands to Bathe” was piped during the forenoon & also later on. No sharks were encountered and all swimmers were returned safely.

[HMS] Illustrious, [HMS] Whelp & [HMS] Wager left about dawn this morning, & soon after a convoy of transports & supply vessels began to enter. [HMAS] Arunta went out about 1400. We proceeded to sea at dusk, and after exercising action stations, when opportunity was taken to load the 6″ hoists, settled down to 4 watch routine, course westerly, in company with [HMAS] Arunta. [see map May 8]


May 8 (Tues) 1945, Manus, Admiralties/Papua New Guinea [Part 1]

May 7 1945Slipped from Woolloomooloo Quay at 0900 last Friday morning and left harbour. Just outside the Heads we were subjected to a massed air attack by [CAC] Boomerangs & Kingfishers carrying out torpedo & dive-bombing attacks. On conclusion, course was set for Manus, Admiralty Islands.

On Sunday, we shifted into topical rig & Divisions were held on the Quarterdeck.

Shipping of various sorts was met with during the trip. HMS Argonaut passed us last night. The weather has been warm & clear for the most part.

Entered Seeadler Harbour at [missing] this morning and anchored at the Eastern end near the floating docks. Weighed anchor about 1400 and secured alongside US oiler “Victorian”. Refueling was completed by 1800 and we proceeded to anchor further up the harbour. Ships in Company included HMS Illustrious. Today the war in Europe has ended. Slight resistance is continuing at a few points but is not expected to last long, and Tuesday the 8th of May is to be celebrated as VE [Victory in Europe] day. “Splice the Mainbrace” was ordered.