Today the Duchess of Cambridge visited Bletchley Park to view a special D-Day exhibition in the newly restored Teleprinter Building, marking the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings.
The historic Bletchley Park Teleprinter Building was where Codebreakers received hundreds of thousands of enemy messages, intercepted at secret listening posts across the UK, throughout the Second World War.
It played a major role in World War Two, producing secret intelligence which had a direct and profound influence on the outcome of the conflict. Using sophisticated codebreaking techniques, workers at Bletchley Park fed crucial information to Allied forces in the critical months, weeks and days leading up to D-Day on 6th June 1944.
Over the past twenty years Bletchley Park has become an internationally renowned heritage attraction, visited by people from around the world, which acknowledges the successes from the War and the people responsible for them. It celebrates their values: broad-minded patriotism; commitment; discipline; technological excellence. By presenting and explaining these achievements and these values, in the very place where they occurred, Bletchley Park brings together the dramatic history of the twentieth century with the challenges we face in the twenty first in our rapidly changing and technologically complex society.
The building is now hosting a special exhibition D-Day: Interception, Intelligence, Invasion. The exhibition includes an immersive film, based on newly declassified material, which shows how the intelligence effort coordinated at Bletchley Park helped specifically in the success of the D-Day landings at Normandy.
The exhibition that opened on Aprill 11 this year will remain open for a decade and will close on April 11, 2029. Featuring a specially commissioned film projected on a 22m screen, the audio-visual experience is located in the newly restored Teleprinter Building where hundreds of thousands of intercepted messages first arrived at Bletchley Park from secret listening posts across the UK, and Ultra intelligence was transmitted to Allied headquarters.
The Duchess viewed the interactive exhibition and meet with Veterans – Rena Stewart, Georgina Rose, Elizabeth Diacon & Audrey Mather in the Mansion who worked together to deliver the restoration of the building.
Duchess talking to the veterans.
Catherine got a very pleasant surprise. On the Codebreakers’ Wall, two bricks are dedicated to her Veteran relatives, her grandmother Valerie Glassborow, and Great Aunt Mary, who worked at the Bletchley Park during the Second World War.
Duchess observing the memorial wall.
She then met schoolchildren taking part in one of Bletchley Park Trust’s learning activities.
An immersive workshop based on the new exhibition allows pupils to take on the role of codebreakers in June 1944, intercepting and deciphering German communications in order to understand their order of battle and decide whether the Operation Fortitude deception plans have been successful.
The mother of three kids, Catherine was totally at ease with kids during the session.
The Duchess of Cambridge visited Bletchley Park in 2014, following the restoration of the exhibition and heritage site. During the visit, Catherine met with veteran codebreakers who worked at Bletchley alongside her grandmother Valerie Glassborow, and her twin sister Mary, during the Second World War.
For the visit, Catherine rewore the Alessandra Rich Pleated polka-dot silk crepe de chine midi dress that we fist saw in the portraits released by Clarence House to mark the 70th Birthday of Prince Charles.
Inspired by Alfred Eisenstaedt’s 1945 photograph of a sailor kissing a stranger in Times Square for label’s Spring ’18 collection, capturing the essence of that iconic moment, this vintage-inspired dress is cut from polka-dot silk crepe de chine that falls to a pleated midi skirt. Highlight its retro feel with yellow sandals. The £1,225 dress is not available any more. But the Spanish label Zara has a fabulous replikate.
Catherine paired the dress with her Emmy London Rebecca Riviera Pumps that she debuted in September 2018 at the wedding of her close friend Sophie Carter.
Catherine debuted a new hand bag today. She was carrying blue Smythson Panama cross-grained leather purse with strap. The £450 clutch is crafted from Panama cross-grained leather and features foldover front with magnetic button closure, removeable adjustable crossbody strap, back zip pocket, internal zip coin section, ten card slots, one slip note pocket, foiled metallic branding, tonal stitching, painted edges, smooth leather lining. It is still available on Selfridge.
Duchess finished her look with Annoushka Baroque Pearl Drops and Kiki McDonough Gold hoops.
Catherine topped her look with a golden pin that is still unidentified. I believe the pin either represents the Bletchley Park and the World War Secret Code Decoding or the veterans. hernameispekka on Twitter suggested that it could be a piece belonging to Duchess’ Great-Grandmother Valerie who worked at Bletchley Park.
I will leave you with this lovely shot of Duchess. Next Week Catherine will be revealing her ‘Back to Nature’ Garden at the Chelsea Flower Show. It is believed, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will attend at least 1 Garden Party hosted at Buckingham Palace so I am expecting another appearance soon.