This guide describes the basic history and workings of the Turing-Welchman Bombe, used to break messages enciphered on the German Enigma machine during World War Two.
The Bombe was one of the most remarkable achievements of Britain’s secret World War Two codebreaking operations, and the rebuild team’s 12-year endeavour to reconstruct a working example of this remarkable machine from scratch using original drawings is now a centre-piece of the Bletchley Park museum.
It has been said that Bletchley Park probably shortened the war by as much as two years, and the Bombe played a central part in that outstanding achievement.
The Enigma cipher machine was used by the German armed forces under battlefield conditions as well as by its Navy, security services and railways, and the tactical information it revealed through the Bombe played a crucial role in the key military decisions taken by the Allies during the war.
This site, approved by the Bombe Rebuild Project Team, is a general guide to what was so closely guarded a wartime secret that its very existence was not publicly revealed until 1974.
The Bombe Rebuild at Bletchley Park is in full working order and is demonstrated by a special team and is also maintained by engineers involved in the original rebuild.