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Fundraising for Colossus at Bletchley Park

We have donated £500 to support The National Museum of Computing ‘sponsor a valve’ campaign. Over the past few months we have been raising funds to support The National Museum of Computing’s (TNMOC) creation of a new gallery for the world’s first electronic, programmable computer, Colossus at Bletchley Park.

The new TNMOC gallery in historic Block H will be on the same spot where Colossus No 9 stood during the war and where the rebuild took place. It is designed to be a fitting tribute to the wartime code-breakers and serve as an inspiration to future generations of computer scientists and engineers.

TNMOC continues to encourage the community to play their part in helping tell their story by sponsoring a valve on a virtual Colossus online.

Tim Reynolds, Deputy Chair of The National Museum of Computing, who has led the fundraising for the new Colossus Gallery, said: “We wanted to build a gallery for the Colossus Rebuild that would be worthy of its astonishing history. The original Colossus computer played a pivotal role in the history of Britain. As the world’s first electronic semi-programmable computer it also marks a beginning of our digital age. We would like to thank ULCC and everyone involved in contributing funds to help build to the new Colossus Gallery.”

Social Fundraising

After we blogging about the TNMOC’s fundraising efforts on this blog earlier this year, readers were encouraged to share the post across their preferred social networks with us matching each social share with £1. You can see our sponsored valve on the Colossus website here.

“By making it easy for our community to support a great cause with one-click, we managed to raise funds to help rebuild & preserve a piece of technology which not only was ahead of its time but is often is seen as the foundation of modern computing”, said Richard Maccabee, Director of ICT at ULCC.

The Colossus

The original Colossus, designed and built by a team led by Tommy Flowers and first operational at Bletchley Park in 1944, was used to help decipher encrypted messages between Hitler and his generals during World War II and carried out complex statistical analysis on intercepted messages at a rate of 5,000 characters per second.

The intelligence gained from these communications with the help of ten Colossus computers is generally acknowledged as having shortened the war by two years and to have saved countless thousands of lives.

Due to the nature of its work, the development and information about the Colossus were kept closely guarded.

Find out more

To find out more about the Colossus gallery, please visit:

Read about the Colossus project from the electronic engineer who led the reconstruction, the late Tony Sale:

Watch the late Tony Sale taking about the Colossus in 2010:


posted by fote-conference on December 14, 2012

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