Gay World War Two codebreaker Alan Turing is the new face on the £50 note

Gay World War Two codebreaker Alan Turing is the new face on the £50 note
News
Posted on 15 Jul 2019

Gay World War Two codebreaker and mathematician Alan Turing is the new face on the £50 note, Bank of England Governor Mark Carney has announced.


Turing, described by Carney as ‘the father of computer science and artificial intelligence’, is best known for the work he did during the war, creating a machine to crack coded Nazi messages. 

He was later convicted of gross indecency for his relationship with a man - a ‘crime’ for which he was posthumously pardoned by the Queen - and accepted chemical castration as an alternative to prison. 


He committed suicide by cyanide poisoning in 1954.

Speaking about Turing, Carney said: "Alan Turing was an outstanding mathematician whose work has had an enormous impact on how we live today. As the father of computer science and artificial intelligence, as well as war hero, Alan Turing’s contributions were far ranging and path breaking. Turing is a giant on whose shoulders so many now stand.”


The codebreaker was selected as the new face of the £50 note from a shortlist of 12, which included Stephen Hawking.

The note will feature a quote from Turing, which reads: "This is only a foretaste of what is to come, and only the shadow of what is going to be."

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