Lieutenant Michael Rout joined the RNZNVR and travelled to the United Kingdom under Scheme B in October 1940. He trained as an seaman at the shore establishment HMS GANGES and spent mandatory seatime in the destroyer HMS SIKH which included a torpedo attack on the German battleship BISMARK. In January 1942 Rout was commissioned into the Royal Navy and after Officer training at the shore establishment HMS KING ALFRED, completed a “small ships” course. He was posted to the Motor Gun Boat and Motor Torpedo Boat fleets at Lowestoft which were operating mainly in the North Sea. He describes coastal force activities in some detail including an attack on a German Flak ship off the coast of Holland for which he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross.
Michael Rout returned to New Zealand in early 1945 for long service leave during which time World War II came to an end. He was subsequently discharged from the RNZNVR in May of that year having attained the rank of Lieutenant.