SS Vega Memorial

SS Vega Memorial

30-12-1944 - 09-05-1945

Albert Pier, St. Helier Harbour
Liberation Route Europe

SS Vega Memorial

The Swedish Red Cross ship SS Vega visited the Channel Islands six times with lifesaving food parcels and medical supplies. Half-way along the Albert Pier, a large golden ‘V for Victory’ is set into the wall beside a plaque that commemorates the first arrival on 30 December 1944.

By December 1944 five months had passed since the Islands had been by passed during the Normandy landings. Supplies had been completely cut off. Conditions were dreadful, with almost no food, medicine and other necessities. Negotiations between the British, German and International Red Cross finally resulted in the Vega being allowed through. The German garrison, just as hungry as those they were guarding, had to watch as the ecstatic Islanders received their parcels once the Salvation Army delivered the innumerable crates to circulation points.

‘God, we were happy,’ remembers Gerald Le Marrec, who was 11 years old when the SS Vega arrived with food parcels for the Islanders. ‘Maple Leaf cheese, Klim milk, cans of salmon, jam, Smiles and Chuckles chocolate…see, I’ve never forgotten them! Every person had a parcel.’

Albert Pier, St. Helier Harbour