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Restoring Bletchley Park, birthplace of modern computing

Google European Public Policy Blog - Late last year Google backed the bid to buy the papers of the British computer scientist and wartime codebreaker Alan Turing and return them to their rightful home at Bletchley Park. We were thrilled when this was finally achieved in February.

Now we’ve joined forces with the Bletchley Park Trust to help raise funds to rebuild Block C, the original wartime building that once housed the vast punched card index—in essence, the “search engine” at the heart of Bletchley Park’s decryption activity.

Bletchley Park played a pivotal role in computing history. For decades the extraordinary achievements of its veterans were hidden by order of the UK’s Official Secrets Act. It was not until the 1980s that the full secret of Colossus — the world’s first electronic programmable computer—was revealed. Housed at Bletchley Park, Colossus and other custom-built machines were crucial aids in the code-breaking, reputed to have shortened World War II by two years.