Stamp honours codebreaker Alan Turing

A MATHS genius who was instrumental in helping crack the Nazis’ Enigma code during the Second World War has been recognised on a new stamp.

Alan Turing, who was educated at St Michael’s School in Charles Road, St Leonards until he was 14, is one of a group of eminent people to be honoured in the latest selection of commemorative stamps by Royal Mail, which were launched last Thursday (February 23).

Mr Turing worked with other code breakers at Bletchley Park, near Milton Keynes, during the Second World War. He led the team which eventually cracked the Nazi Enigma code, often seen as a turning point in the war for the Allies.

Mr Turing studied maths at King’s College, Cambridge and his paper On Computable Numbers would prove fundamental to the development of modern computing.

He made major computer breakthroughs in the post-war years and is generally regarded as the father of computer science.

Mr Turing was convicted of homosexuality in 1952 and underwent chemical castration as an alternative to prison. He committed suicide in 1954 by swallowing cyanide.

Mr Turing received a posthumous apology from the then Prime Minister Gordon Brown in 2009 labelling the treatment he got as ‘utterly unfair’ and ‘appalling’.

Last week a campaign backed by supporters in Hastings to grant Mr Turing a pardon for his conviction was rejected by the Government, despite an online petition collecting more than 23,000 signatures.

Lord McNally, Justice Minister, dismissed the motion in the House of Lords.

Last April a road leading to the new Sussex Coast College site in Ore Valley was named after the mathematician, called Turing Way.