CORB Departures (July-September 1940)


Figure 1.--Here a little girl says good goodbye to her big brother at Liverpool docks. Pathe News

Actual evacuations began in July. The children boarded liners in Liverpool, Britain's principal port for the North Atlantic routes to Canada and America. There were tearful goodbyes there as the children prepared to leave. The first departure was the Anselm with 82 children aboard. [Fethney, p. 60.] It left Liverpool unprotected. The departure and the idea of being on a ship was exciting. But as most parents will understand, sea sickness was a major problem. There were lifeboat drills and many children saw ships in the convoys being sunk by U-boats. A total of about 3,100 children were evacuated under the CORB scheme in the 3 months that CORB conducted the evacuations. They left in small groups aboard various liners. The numbers varied depending on the various groups available. The largest numbers were sent off to Canada. Smaller numbers were sent to Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa. There were also children sent to America, but I don't think they were sent as part of the CORB sheme.

Departures

Actual evacuations began in July. The children boarded liners in Liverpool, Britain's principal port for the North Atlantic routes to Canada and America. There were tearful goodbyes there as the children prepared to leave. The first departure was the Anselm with 82 children aboard. [Fethney, p. 60.] It left Liverpool unprotected.

Aboard Ship

The departure and the idea of being on a ship was exciting. But as most parents will understand, sea sickness was a major problem. Many of the children report that as their major memory of the voyage. [Fenthey, p. 98-101.] There were lifeboat drills and many children saw ships in the convoys being sunk by U-boats.

City of Benares

The CORB was quickly ended after the tragic City of Benares sinking (September 17).

Numbers

A total of about 3,127 children were evacuated under the CORB scheme on 19 ships in the 3 months that CORB conducted the evacuations. They left in small groups aboard various liners. The numbers varied depending on the various groups available. The largest numbers were sent off to Canada. Smaller numbers were sent to Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa. There were also children sent to America, but I don't think they were sent as part of the CORB sheme.

Sources

Fethney, Michael. The Absurd and the Brave: CORB--The True Account of the British Government's World War II Evacuatin of Children Overseas (Lewes: The Book Guild, 2000).





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Created: 11:15 PM 9/23/2007
Last updated: 11:16 PM 9/23/2007