As part of the British effort to control the influx of Jewish refugees into Palestine after the Second World War, the Royal Navy formally instituted the ‘Palestine Patrol’ in October 1945, although some refugee ships were intercepted before this date. The patrol lasted until the end of the British mandate over Palestine in June 1948. Figures vary greatly, but during the period of the patrol, some sixty ships carrying rather more than 50,000 refugees sought to break through the Navy’s quarantine in order to put illegal migrants ashore in Palestine covertly since this would allow them to evade the authorities and melt into the Jewish population of that troubled area. Just under 3,000 of them, in eight ships, got through.2