The Nova Scotia took on supplies and water before joining up with the convoy and sailing for Egypt. On 21st April 1941, they arrived safely at Port Tewfik at the southern end of the Suez Canal and unloaded the troops and their equipment. They then took onboard Italian and German prisoners of war and took them to Durban in South Africa. One they were offloaded, they loaded South African and Rhodesian troops for transit through the Suez Canal to Port Said. There they again loaded prisoners of war for transport to Durban. The Italian were not keen on cleaning duties but, as soon as they were put in charge of the Germans who took no nonsense, they got to it.
The gunners were transferred from the Nova Scotia in Durban on 19th July and were taken to CapeTown on a dreadful little ship with no accommodation. Gordon was dreadfully seasick for the first and last time.
The RMS Nova Scotia was later sunk by the German submarine U177 on 20th November 1942 when transporting Italian prisoners from Aden to Durban. The tragedy occurred 15miles east by north of Cape St. Lucia. The Captain, 96 crew, 5 passengers, 106 troops and 650 prisoners were lost. A few survivors were picked up by a Portugese sloop, Alfonso de Albuquerque off Mozambique. It was a stroke of luck that Gordon was elsewhere.
For extra information