Slapton had already been used for American and Allied small scale exercises giving some experience to the planners for the first of the “Fabius” series codenamed “Tiger” scheduled to take place between 22nd and 29th April 1944.
It was to test the movement, marshalling and embarkation of troops and vehicles culminating in a beach assault on 27th April with re-supply landings on 28thApril. Tiger was also the first operational test of Anglo-American co-operation as the British Royal Navy were to provide minesweeping, protective cover and the pre-assault beach bombardment.
Time was short. FUSA ordered “Tiger” on 21st March 1944 requiring VII Corps to submit their operational plan by 7th April. By 4th April the draft plan was well advanced, “Tiger” D-Day agreed as 27th April by both Navy and Army and the US Navy optimistically agreed to publish their operational order on 18th April.
Vessel loading details were confused as Army and Navy documents were published separately, on different dates with discrepancies between them both.
Army “Road movement” documents didn’t always agree with their loading details resulting in the Navy changing vessel loads of men, units and equipment in order to achieve the full lift.
Overall the loading phase of Exercise "Tiger" was almost a shambles but somehow all Army units were loaded, some not on their designated vessel, others moved from one to another, but the Navy managed to land almost all of them in the right place at the right time.