News from 1945: Georgic becomes a troopship

Mark Baber

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The Times, 12 April 1945

THE GEORGIC NOW A TROOPSHIP
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BATTLE-SCARRED LINER RECONDITIONED

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FROM OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT
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LIVERPOOL, APRIL 11
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The former Cunard-White Star liner Georgic, 27,000 tons, which three
years ago was bombed and gutted by fire and lay ashore half-submerged in
Suez Roads, to all intents and purposes a total loss. now lies here a
monument to the skill of sailors and the men who make the ships in which
they sail.

The battle-scarred ship returned to Liverpool on March 1, 1943, after
her temporary repairs in India. Surveyors of the Admiralty and the
Ministry of War Transport reported that before the ship could be
recommissioned it would be necessary to remove all the decks comprising
the superstructure, the greater part of A and B decks, and several
sections of the lower decks. The ship was moved to Belfast for the
original builders, Harland and Wolff, to undertake the work, and before
rebuilding could start 5,000 tons of steel had to be cut away.

By the end of last May, 12 months from the day when the first small gang
of men began dismantling operations, nearly 2,000 men were employed on
the job, and at the beginning of December it was completed. Nineteen
months had passed since the Georgic had left Liverpool as a shell of
twisted girders, buckled plates, and scarred débris. In that time the
finest type of troopship afloat had been made of her. Among her new
features are recreation rooms, cinema, spacious mess halls,
well-equipped sleeping quarters, shower-baths, and a barber shop. There
is a new system of ventilation and an internal broadcasting system with
loud-speakers in every part of the ship.

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