and communications in Bletchley Park

When Bletchley Park was first set up before the war there was a radio transmitting station on the site. This remained until January 1940. It was then decided not to have a radio transmitter on site due to the possibility of the Germans finding the signals and locating the site.

All the received intercepts were brought into the park from the Y stations all over the country by either dispatch rider or sent by teleprinter. The decoded messages were then sent to London, again by teleprinter or dispatch rider. As these decrypts were not sent by radio the axis forces could not intercept them, so they were secure. Later in the war when D-Day was in the planning one of the items discussed was the time delay of sending intercepted messages to the Park and then to London for analyzing then transmitting to the front in our own codes. As this was deemed to be too long it was decided to set up a Y station in the Park and have the decrypts analysed there as well. This was in a hut by the lake and was run by naval staff for the months of May to July to cover the initial invasion only and the station was never used again during the war.

Prior to the war, a transmitting station was set up in the Park by MI6 to maintain contact with their agents in the field. The room chosen for the station was a very small room in the roof of the Mansion, opposite what was Winston Churchill's bedroom. The long wire antenna was strung from a short pole on the roof to a tree which is in front of the Mansion. The room with no windows measured 10 feet by 8 feet and held over the operators head the main water tank for the Mansion, so not only was it very hot but also noisy. These could not have been very good conditions for operating radios. This station was maintained through out the war despite the possibility of being found: the messages being sent were kept very short and transmission times were changed. Most of the time it was receiving messages from the agents.

The equipment installed was made by Philips, Hallicrafter, Hammerland and there was a AR77 as well.

This small room has now been totally restored to its original condition by members of Milton Keynes Amateur Radio Society including the return from the USA of one of the original radios

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