Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Enigmatic tale of second hand book

A CHANCE find in his own second-hand bookshop set Doctor Mark Baldwin delving into a subject that would change his life.

The book he found was Very Secret Intelligence written by Patrick Beesley and it referred to the Enigma machines whose code was so stunningly broken by the teams at Bletchley Park.

Such was the mystique surrounding the codebreakers — much of their work was only revealed long after the war ended — that public fascination has not dimmed in the intervening years.

All of which leads Doctor Baldwin to the Kenton Theatre next month when he will give a talk on the work of the brains of Bletchley. But none of this would have happened without that book about the Royal Navy Intelligence Department using Enigma decryptions.

“It was about 20 years ago that I came across it in my shop. I thought ‘I will read this before I sell it’ which I did. I then started talking about it in the shop. Some people had a vague idea about Enigma but it was not widely known,” he said.

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