The Bank of England has unveiled a £50 note featuring World War 2 codebreaking pioneer and “iconic LGBT+ figure” Alan Turing.
The note will enter circulation on June 23, coinciding with what would have been Turing’s birthday.
The scientist’s appearance on the £50 note is a “landmark moment in our history”, according to GCHQ director Jeremy Fleming.
“Not only is it a celebration of his scientific genius which helped to shorten the war and influence the technology we still use today, it also confirms his status as one of the most iconic LGBT+ figures in the world,” Fleming said.
Turing cracked the Enigma code used to write German naval messages, allowing Allied forces to read them during the war. His groundbreaking work was credited with bringing forward the end of the war and stopping further deaths but he suffered in later life.
The Dorset-born academic was convicted of gross indecency in 1952 for his relationship with a 19-year-old man in Manchester and was handed a sentence of chemical castration instead of prison time, forcing him to take female hormones.