Alan Turing set to receive pardon

Alan Turing Photo:

Alan Turing is considered one of the most brilliant mathematicians of the last century.

His code-breaking work at Bletchley Park in Milton Keynes helped Britain win the second world war, and his ground breaking work in technology helped lay the foundations for modern computer science.

But, along with Oscar Wilde, Alan Turing is also one of 49,000 gay men who were prosecuted for their sexuality under the 1885 Criminal Law Amendment Act.

After his conviction in 1952, the Cambridge mathematician was subjected to chemical castration. He committed suicide two years later, at the age of just 41.

A German 'Enigma' code machine Credit: PA

In 2009, the then Prime Minister Gordon Brown issued an apology for Alan Turing's 'inhumane' treatment. Now a long campaign to grant Alan Turing an official pardon has gained the backing of the government.

"I know government ministers have been debating it internally and I'm absolutely delighted that they now seem to have had a change of heart and hopefully we will get this law through in this session of parliament.

"As a nation we have apologised in the past, this would be to me the final cleansing of the wrong that was done to him and we can concentrate fully on celebrating his enormous achievements in this country."

– Iain Stewart MP, Milton Keynes South

A bill proposing a full parliamentary pardon for Turing is expected to go before the House of Commons in October.