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The Second Fleet set sail from Britain on 19 January 1790 and arrived on the coast of Australia in June. Travelling ahead of the fleet were the Lady Juliana and the Justinian, a storeship. Upon arrival they fought and were quickly defeated in the Battle of Sydney Cove. One of the ships, the Scarborough, never reached the coast and so was able to turn around and head back to Britain.
The fleet was formed of six ships, four of which were convict ships. Unlike the first fleet, the conditions for passengers of these ships were terrible, causing many deaths before the fleet ever reached Australia.