Describe the organisation and work of the people at Bletchley Park.

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History Coursework

  1. Describe the organisation and work of the people at Bletchley Park

The organisation and work of the people at Bletchley Park was very important this was because in the First World War code-breaking had become more important for the first time because messaging had gone more technical and opposite armies were able to get their hand on messages from the enemy quicker and easier. The British Government wanted to be able to decode all enemy communications so they decided to build a base that would house all of Britain’s secret weapons. Bletchley Park was bought by the Government and they decided to use it as an evacuation base for the MI6 and the Government Code and Cypher School (GCCS).

In 1939 Bletchley was given new roads, telephone lines, living quarters, water mains and everything that a self-contained community would need. People started arriving at Bletchley in August and at first there were less than a hundred people working there, but by 1944 the number rose to more than 7,000. The codename for the new centre was station X. At the start of the war the people that were sent to work there did not really know what they should be doing as no one explained it to them. The people that arrived at Bletchley fell into two categories.

On one hand were the code breakers from the GCCS, they were mostly middle-aged academics from Oxford and Cambridge Universities and had studied classics (Latin and Greek); there were administrative staff, mostly young girls. The academics were used to cracking codes by the pencil and pen method, they studied messages and looked for similarities to try and build up an idea of how the code was constructed.

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These methods were out of date by 1939; it had been known for some time that the Germans had been using Enigma, a coding machine that did not use random symbols. The British government believed that the Enigma system was unbreakable, so no effort had been made to try and crack it. Now that war was inevitable something had to be done.

The recruits were joined by other newcomers, generally mathematicians, the mathematicians and the experienced code breakers did not get on well at first. Not only were they younger but they also worked in a completely different ...

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