6th April 1941 – the
two Queens meet

QM and QE off Sydney HeadsOn 6th April 1941 Queen Mary and Queen Eliza­beth met at sea for the first time, off Sydney Heads, Australia. Although they had been together briefly docked in New York, this was their first meeting at sea. Three other large liners joined them, together with an escort of cruisers and destroyers, to prepare for a major troop convoy.

qm,qe,maure,namster, US10 april 41Soon after, they sailed in Convoy US10 with Mauretania, Île de France and Nieuw Amsterdam. They headed for Fremantle, where they topped up fuel and water tanks on 16th April, and reaching Trinco­malee by 25th April. Queen Mary had 5,724 Australian troops, Queen Elizabeth had 5,633, Île de France had 3,269, Nieuw Amsterdam had 2,642 and Mauretania had 3,891 New Zealanders. They reached Port Suez safely on 6th May.