Google donates $850,000 to restore home of the codebreakers

Google has donated £550,000 ($850,000) towards the £15 million project to renovate Bletchley Park. The donation from Mountain View is part of a $100 million charitable program that's previously helped rescue Alan Turing's personal papers. The country estate is the former home of Station X and the British Government's Code and Cypher School, which was where the World War Two model of the Enigma Machine was decrypted. Turing, its most famous alumnus went on to pioneer computer science and artificial intelligence during his short life and the complex now houses the National Museum of Computing. Unfortunately the buildings are rapidly collapsing and enormous investment is still required to transform the site into a museum, attraction and fitting tribute to the work of the codebreakers.

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Released : Dec 14, 2011

Bletchley Park Trust significantly closer to raising match funding needed to unlock Heritage Lottery Fund grant of £4.6 million for restoration of WW2 Codebreaking Huts
Search engine Google, has announced a very generous donation of £550,000 towards the match funding needed for the Bletchley Park Trust to embark on the first stage of a £15 million project to transform the site into a world-class heritage and education centre.

Google's backing draws the Bletchley Park Trust nearer to its goal of developing the site, both to educate and inspire generations to come and as a permanent testament to the brilliant people who worked there. Once the remaining funding is in place the Trust will get underway with the restoration of iconic codebreaking huts 1, 3 and 6 and create a world-class visitor centre and exhibition in the currently derelict Block C. This development will not only conserve buildings of highly-significant heritage value and but also considerably improve the educational offering and visitor experience at Bletchley Park.

Peter Barron, Director of External Relations for Google, said, "The Bletchley Park Trust has been doing great work to honour Alan Turing and the codebreakers who helped shorten the second world war and to educate the next generation about the history of modern computing. We are delighted to make this charitable donation to help support the next phase of this important project"

Simon Greenish, CEO of the Bletchley Park Trust, said, "We are tremendously grateful to Google for bringing us considerably closer to achieving our development aims. We have received other generous contributions towards the project but this is the largest single element of the partnership funding and absolutely vital in potentially getting the project underway much sooner than might otherwise have been the case. It would be wonderful if other donors follow Google's example to help preserve our computing heritage. We could then proceed as soon as possible with restoration of the profoundly historically significant codebreaking huts".

The Bletchley Park Trust is one of several dozen organisations receiving grants from at the end of 2011 and the grant is part of over $100 million in total charitable giving from Google in 2011.