Turing’s work has to be recognised

Alan Turing
Alan Turing
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A COMMONS debate took place today calling for more recognition for Alan Turing.

Mr Turing was one of the key figures at Bletchley Park during the Second World War and led the team which eventually cracked the Enigma code – a success many attribute as the turning point in the war.

But in 1952, he was convicted of ‘gross indecency’ with another man and punished by chemical castration. Two years later he committed suicide, aged just 41.

Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown formally apologised to Mr Turing’s family in 2009, but many believe he should be cleared.

It has also been suggested he should be featured on the back of the new £10 note.

MP for Milton Keynes South Iain Stewart spoke in today’s debate about his desire to see Parliament recognise Mr Turing, and thank him for all he did for the country.

He said: “We want to build momentum on the pardon issue but today that was secondary on my agenda.

“First and foremost I want the Government to recognise the fantastic work he did at Bletchley Park.”

The campaign to gain a pardon is continuing with a new Bill set to be introduced by Lord John Sharkey.

However, Mr Stewart was unsure if it would focus solely on Mr Turing or be for all who persecuted in the same manner.

“Back in 2006 a group of soldiers who were beheaded for cowardice were given a block pardon.” he said.

“There was no vote today but I am positive in the direction it is moving.”

Mr Stewart was quick to play down the suggestion the £10 note idea would be a way of ignoring the pardon subject.

He said: “I certainly don’t think the two subjects are linked in any way.

“I did mention the bank note idea in my speech and I think that it is fitting that modern notes are incredibly hard to forge because of numbers encrypted on them. Only a codebreaker could forge them.”