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Working Enigma machine brought to Cambridge

It is story that has inspired books and films - and today one of only a handful of working Enigma machines has been in Cambridge.

The machines, which generated complex codes for the Germans in the Second World War, were supposed to be unbreakable.

That was until the experts at Bletchley Park cracked the code.

Matthew Hudson had the chance to get up close to a real piece of modern history.



Work of 'forgotten' Bletchley Park codebreaker goes on display

Gordon Welchman. Credit: Bletchley Park

A new exhibition about the work of World War Two codebreaker Gordon Welchman has opened at Bletchley Park.

The former Cambridge University mathematician worked alongside Alan Turing on the design for a machine to break the Enigma code.

He is also known for setting up the famous 'Hut 6 ' at Bletchley where one million German codes were decrypted.

Half a million sign Turing petition demanding thousands of pardons

The family of Bletchley Park codebreaker Alan Turing visited Downing Street today to demand pardons for 49 thousand men who were persecuted for being gay.

Turing killed himself just two years after being convicted for homosexuality. He received a royal pardon in 2013.

A petition has been signed by half a million people including Benedict Cumberbatch who played the mathematician in the Imitation Game.

Click below to see Bob Constantine's report.

Turing family hand in petition at Downing Street

The Turing family at Downing Street Credit: ITV News

The family of Bletchley Park codebreaker Alan Turing - who was played on the big screen by Benedict Cumberbatch in The Imitation Game - have been at Downing Street today to demand the Government pardons 49,000 other men persecuted for their homosexuality.

Turing, whose work cracking the German military codes was vital to the British war effort against Nazi Germany, was convicted in 1952 for gross indecency with a 19-year-old man. He was chemically castrated, and two years later died from cyanide poisoning in an apparent suicide.

He was given a posthumous royal pardon in 2013 and campaigners want the Government to pardon all the men convicted under the same outdated law.

Turing's great-nephew, Nevil Hunt, his great-niece, Rachel Barnes, and her son, Thomas, have handed over the petition, which was signed by almost half-a-million people.

Science celebrated with special stamps

Two of the region's scientific breakthroughs are being celebrated on a new set of Royal Mail stamps.

1st class stamp celebrating Colossus Credit: Royal Mail

Cambridge scientist Frederick Sangers pioneering technique of DNA sequencing is on the £1.47 stamp.

Stamp celebrating DNA sequencing Credit: Royal Mail

The code breaking Colossus computer, which was built at Bletchley Park near Milton Keynes, is getting a 1st class stamp.

The stamps form part of the Inventive Britain Special Stamps, issued on 19 February 2015.

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