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Final Training and Group Formation

Photograph of Admiral "Monkey" Stephenson

Admiral "Monkey" Stephenson

As the final modifications were completed ships were directed to Tobermoray where they had to suffer the harsh but thorough training regime of Admiral "Monkey" Stephenson, after emerging feeling battered and bruised, but very efficient they were allocated to whichever Escort Group or Port Division in which they were to serve.

How the Admiralty devised the Escort Groups has always remained a mystery to their crews. The first Escort Group to be formed was the 4th followed by the 3rd then the 1st and the 5th all at Belfast, then later in the war the 15th. And later still the 21st also were formed to be operative from Belfast, after they had completed their part during the invasion in fighting the German E-Boats.

Some of the ships also served in mixed escort groups, for example an old V & W Destroyer,a Captain Class Frigate, a River Class Frigate and a couple of Corvettes, or some similar permutation.

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