Alan Turing's Code-Breaking Notes Have Been Patching Bletchly Park's Leaky Roofs

By Gerald Lynch on at

Though you may aspire to one day have your masterpiece of a diary saved for all posterity, uncovered notes belonging to Alan Turing's code-breaking team won't exactly fill you with much hope. Rather than seeing the war-winning documents preserved, it's been revealed that some of Turing's papers relating to his ground breaking work to crack the Enigma code were used to stuff draughty and leaky ceilings at the Bletchley Park base at which he worked.

The "Branbury Sheets" (punched with holes so that Turing's team could compare each day's undeciphered Nazi communications) were found plugging holes in the ceiling of Hut 6 (Turing's war time code-breaking base of operations), despite the fact they should have been destroyed under wartime efforts to maintain military secrets.

"Discovering these pieces of code-breaking ephemera is incredibly exciting and provides yet more insight into how the code breakers actually worked," said Bletchley Park Trust chief executive Ian Standen.

"The fact that these papers were used to block draughty holes in the primitive hut walls reminds us of the rudimentary conditions under which these extraordinary people were working."

The papers, which were first discovered in September as part of an £8 million renovation process at Bletchley Park, will be restored and put on display next month. [MK Web via The Register, The Times]