Operation Aladdin

This was the British undertaking to start the Allied process of accepting the surrender of the German occupation forces, some 372,000 strong, in the southern part of occupied Norway from a time soon after VE-Day (12/31 May 1945).

On 12 May Rear Admiral J. S. McL. Ritchie departed the UK with the heavy cruiser Devonshire, cruiser minelayers Apollo (carrying Crown Prince Olaf of Norway) and Ariadne, and destroyers Savage, Scourge, Canadian Iroquois and Norwegian Arendal, and this force entered Oslo on 13 May. On 15 May the corvette Buttercup arrived with members of the Norwegian naval staff. On 14 May the destroyers Valorous and Venomous, accompanied by six minesweepers, entered Kristiansand South, and the destroyers Wolsey and Wolfhound entered Stavanger. On 15 May the destroyers Woolston and Vivacious, the Norwegian corvette Acanthus, and a number of British and Norwegian minesweepers entered Bergen, and on 16 May the destroyers Mackay and Viceroy, together with a force of nine minesweepers, entered Trondheim.

On 13 May the Norwegian destroyer Stord and the British destroyer Broadway departed Rosyth, and on 16 May off the Vestfjord met surrendered U-boats on passage from the Arctic to Trondheim, and handed them over to the 9th Escort Group, which was escorting the JW.67 convoy. The two destroyers reached Tromsø during the evening of 16 May. From there, Stord headed north to land personnel for a Norwegian weather station on Bjørnøya on 25/26 May.

Leaving Scotland, part of the Norwegian Brigade reached Tromsø on 26 May in the transport Largs Bay. Vice Admiral R. R. McGrigor reached Bergen with the heavy cruiser Norfolk and the 30th Escort Group, and the heavy cruiser Berwick with the Canadian destroyers Haida and Huron, and the 5th Escort Group reached Trondheim to take over and transfer the captured U-boats to the UK on 29/31 May.