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Bletchley campaigner's Enigma code wedding proposal

Wedding proposal tweet Image copyright Twitter

A computer scientist who campaigned to save Bletchley Park is to be married after her fiancé proposed using the Enigma code.

Dr Sue Black launched a campaign to save the site - home of the World War Two Enigma codebreakers - in 2008.

Her partner, Dr Paul Boca, asked her to marry him by entering a coded version of his proposal into an online Enigma simulator.

The Surrey couple are now looking for an "equally geeky" way to get married.

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During the war specialists based at the park managed to crack the German intelligence service's code encrypted on Enigma machines. Their work is credited with shortening the conflict.

Image copyright Dr Sue Black

Dr Black's contribution to helping restore the site, which she said was in danger of "irreparable decay", was recognised with an OBE for services to technology in the New Year Honours list in December.

Her partner's "out of the blue" proposal, which was first reported in The Knot, was a "highly appropriate" way to pop the question, Dr Black told the BBC.

"We're just a boring middle-aged couple who spend most evenings sitting on separate sofas on our laptops.

"I knew something was up when Paul came over and sat next to me," she said.

'Click on decrypt'

Dr Boca asked her to look at his laptop screen, where he had entered the seemingly random selection of numbers and letters "21 ,23vl9!37ag9"?az" into the simulator.

"He told me to click on 'decrypt' and up popped the question," Dr Black said.

"We've not got any wedding plans at the moment. After a proposal like that we want to do something else quite geeky, we just haven't thought of it yet."

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