October 15, 2011
SoftAid for Bletchley Park - Let's Claim Hut 6 For The Software Community!Rebuilding Bletchley Park is a vital ingredient in inspiring a renaissance in British computing. The national code breaking centre played a vital role both in ending WWII and in the development of modern computing.
The place is without question computing's "Globe Theatre". The father of modern computing, Alan Turing, did some of his most groundbreaking work there. The day they switched on Colossus, the first programmable electronic computer, for the first time in 1943 was just as momentous and historic an occasion as the original opening night of Hamlet.
The theatre community rallied to finance the rebuild of the Globe Theatre on London's South Bank, and so too must we - the software development community - rally to rebuild Bletchley Park so that future generations can be as inspired about computing as today's budding actors, writers and directors are inspired by the Globe.
If Bletchley Park can raise £1.7M in match funding, it will unlock £4.6M from the Heritage Lottery Fund. This money will enable them to turn derilict Block C into a world-class visitor centre and renovate historic huts 1,3 and 6 to just how they were when the code breakers had their finest hours in WWII.
While Bletchley Park looks to funding bodies and corporate sponsors to help bridge the £1.7M gap, we can do our bit to ensure it becomes a world-class visitor attraction worthy of its place in modern history.
I've seen the software development community move mountains when we put our minds to it. Let's be honest now - we're a pretty amazing bunch.
We can do it.
If we can raise a £380,000 share of that £1.7M, then we'll have enough money to pay for the complete renovation of Hut 6. If we did that, then the Bletchley Park Trust tell me that they would be delighted to dedicate Hut 6 to the Software Development Community, so future generations will know that it was us who did it, and not some faceless corporation or funding body.
Everyone who donates via the SoftAid JustGiving page will be listed in a book of dedication which will be kept at Bletchley Park in perpetuity, so there'll always be a record to show that you cared and that you played your part in preserving our computing heritage.
To donate, visit our JustGiving page. I know times are tough, but please give what you can.
You can also donate via text message in the UK. Text BPRK66 followed by the amount you wish to donate (e.g., BPRK66 £10) to 70070 and it will be added to your next mobile bill. Easy as peas!
And please, please, please spread the word. There are 300,000 software developers in the UK and we need to try and reach them all. The more people we reach, the easier it will be.
That's how we move mountains, see!
Posted 8 years, 9 months ago on October 15, 2011