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NYD trip to Bletchley Park

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NYD trip to Bletchley Park

Old 01-01-20, 03:43 PM
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rmwesley
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NYD trip to Bletchley Park

Spent New Year's Day looking around Bletchley Park which was absolutely fascinating. If you ever get a chance it is well worth seeing the history and immense intellectual effort associated with cracking the German WWII Enigma codes.

Bike pics to follow but I've included a few pics of the main house, an Enigma machine and a Typex machine if anyone is interested in these. I've got a short video of a replica Bombe in action also but not sure if I can upload this.

Bikes were displayed in a shed in the grounds and were behind a chain link so the quality of the pics isn't brilliant I'm afraid. Not sure if there is anything of real C&V interest or if they were just show bikes. Would be interested to hear back.


Bletchley Park main house


Enigma machine


Typex machine
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Old 01-01-20, 03:45 PM
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Old 01-01-20, 03:48 PM
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Old 01-01-20, 04:50 PM
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history drips from that place ! really the dawn of the modern computer industry.

there's a story about Allen Turing riding his bike to Bletchley Park and noticing the chain skipped because a bent chainring tooth hit a sticky link in the chain.

So he calculated the number of links and the number of chainring teeth and how far he'd have to ride to make them intersect. A simple factoring problem related to cryptography.

I hate those concrete slots ! Will bend your rim for sure.

Mark Petry
Bainbridge Island, WA USA
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Old 01-01-20, 04:55 PM
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Fabulous!! I'd love to see that place. I love movies about the code breaking efforts that went on there.
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Old 01-01-20, 05:45 PM
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I wonder if some of those parts on those bikes that are normally chromed are painted black because of wartime chrome rationing. I know that was a thing here in the states with a lot of wartime production items like cameras.
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Old 01-02-20, 10:25 AM
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I would like to know the back story of the bikes. Were they government owned bikes for the Bletchley staff, or privately owned bikes left behind? It appears from the photos that they are left out in the weather - is that the case?

Great thread.
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Old 01-02-20, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by dweenk View Post
I would like to know the back story of the bikes. Were they government owned bikes for the Bletchley staff, or privately owned bikes left behind? It appears from the photos that they are left out in the weather - is that the case?

Great thread.
Thanks The bikes were covered above but in the open air. Unsure if they were "staged" or actually originals used to get around camp. I know my pictures aren't great but was hoping someone might be able to date them to the nearest decade. The rest of the museum and displays contained a mix of staged displays (but using artefacts from the correct era, e.g. typewriters, clothes, maps etc.) and completely authentic material (e.g. codebooks, letters, encrypted & unencrypted messages etc.). They had the original typescript of the decoded Zimmermann Telegram which brought the USA into WWII.

After doing a bit of googling it seems as though Alan Turing's bicycle mentioned above was / is displayed at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney.
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Old 01-02-20, 01:19 PM
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Originally Posted by rmwesley View Post
Thanks The bikes were covered above but in the open air. Unsure if they were "staged" or actually originals used to get around camp. I know my pictures aren't great but was hoping someone might be able to date them to the nearest decade. The rest of the museum and displays contained a mix of staged displays (but using artefacts from the correct era, e.g. typewriters, clothes, maps etc.) and completely authentic material (e.g. codebooks, letters, encrypted & unencrypted messages etc.). They had the original typescript of the decoded Zimmermann Telegram which brought the USA into WWII.

After doing a bit of googling it seems as though Alan Turing's bicycle mentioned above was / is displayed at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney.
I am in no way an expert able to accurately date these bikes, but my best guess is that they are post war. I am thinking late 40's to early 60's. War bikes would not have had chrome parts (especially at a sensitive site like Bletchley). Perhaps they were nearly period correct and could be staged as an example.
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