On 26th June we sailed from Rosyth for Rotterdam and arrived there on 28thJune. The weather was glorious and the visit a tremendous success. I do not think any of us will ever forget that wonderful river, the fascination of that never ceasing traffic along the canals and waterways and the marvellous hospitality of the Dutch. There was a wonderful childrens party and crowded visitors days when the Bookstall took a record £300 in the sale of souvenirs. We had tied up alongside the Holland-America Shipping Line quay and as a parting gesture the company gave every person on board a tin of Dutch chocolates - a very welcome gift in those times of rationing. Finally, we had the great honour of a visit by Her Majesty Queen Juliana of the Netherlands accompanied by Prince Bernhard to attend a dinner party given by the Commander-in-Chief. We left Rotterdam on 4th July, most reluctantly, and the ship was turned in the River Maas by tugs with literally inches to spare at the bow and stern from either shoreline.
HMS Vanguard in the River Maas, Rotterdam
Queen Juliana and Prince Bernhard with Admiral Creasey
Vanguard floodlit at Rotterdam
Above - Barge on the River Maas
Buried in the sand at Schnivengen with German fortification in the background
We arrived at Torquay the same day for a short visit and the Ships Company was given the 'Freedom Of the City'. During our stay a number of dances and concerts were arranged. We sailed for Portsmouth on 9th July and after
anchoring for the night in Portland Bay we went up harbour on 10th July and once more tied up alongside South Railway Jetty to give Summer Leave. Even the leave period was enlivened by the tremendous crowds that surged over the ship during Navy Days. It was recorded that on one day more people went over Vanguard than came in through the Main Dockyard Gate. How that was achieved was never discovered.