... it's all a matter of time and distance. I'd remembered the bit on Renown being told she couldn't go to the dance, wasn't sure where, checked my old copy of Ludovic Kennedy and went no further. I could've gone on about ABC sending his "R's" out of the Med., to preserve them from long range gunnery, air attack, et. al., the Admiralty later telling Somerville to get his "R's" to the East African coast and out of the way when the Japanese raided the Indian Ocean, leaving Ceylon & India etc. ... In any case, I've since checked Roskill. Rodney and her 4 destroyers "were ordered to close" as in the enemy, Edinburgh was to "join the shadowing force" Ramillies on the other hand was ordered to "place herself to the west of the enemy" (by a strange quirk, Revenge was ordered to leave Halifax and close towards Bismarck, but on the 24th was to meet with HX128 - semantics? change of mind? I dunno). Checking a diagram as well, had Bismarck held onto a steady heading on the 25th, Tovey with KGV & Repulse, Rodney, Edinburgh would have converged 1800-2100 hrs., Wake-Walker with PoW and the 2 cruisers shadowing Bismarck from the north, Ramillies to the south. At 18 knots, it's hard to judge whether Ramillies would've made the party or not, but she wouldn't be the 1st there anyway, and there was no need for her to be. With Bismarck lost, i.e. somewhere off to the east, Repulse broke off W for Newfoundland at 1047 hrs., KGV and Rodney headed NE noonish before they could meet up, PoW broke off NE for Iceland at 1500 hrs., but what's noteworthy is that Repulse passed a short distance to the north of Ramillies, which turned south at 1700 hrs. Prinz Eugen, of little apparent interest to everyone else, was to the east of Repulse & Ramillies, not all that far off. Of course this is all open to interpretation, mine is that Ramiliies was initially placed there i.e. "to the west" to protect shipping as she'd already been doing for months anyway, her duty would be to go into "Harm's Way" to defend a convoy to the utmost of her ability if required, not go one-on-one with Bismarck in the Western Atlantic to prevent her from escaping. Incidentally, Force H had already lost its destroyers due to fueling, as Rodney and KGV were about to engage, Ark Royal and Renown were heading east as well. There's a bit somewhere about a U-Boat skipper inbound to L'Orient, watching the pair go sailing by; he'd already spent his torpedos.