Photograph of John Pryor and wartime letter
Media playback is unsupported on your device
Video

Mathematician decodes WW2 letters

A top mathematician has deciphered coded messages in WW2 letters sent from imprisoned British naval officer John Pryor to his family.

For 60 years, mysterious coded letters from a British prisoner of war have refused to give up their secrets.

Relatives of imprisoned naval officer John Pryor were unable to discover the hidden messages in the dozens of letters he sent back to his family.

Finally, with the help of a top mathematician, the wartime cipher has been cracked.

Jon Kay reports.

  • 30 Apr
  • From the section UK