Alan Turing could appear on the £50 note

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Gay codebreaker Alan Turing is one of the frontrunners to become the official face of the £50 note. Bank of England Governor Mark Carney on Friday announced a public contest to find a figure from the world of science to replace inventor James Watt on the redesigned bank note. British people will be allowed to make the choice by themselves by means of online voting on the Bank of England’s official website. Computer scientist and codebreaker Alan Turing is among the frontrunners for the honor, alongside mathematician Ada Lovelace and physicist Stephen Hawking. Turing, often hailed as the grandfather of modern computing, was charged with gay sex in 1952, as it was a crime in the UK by then, and sentenced to chemical castration, which later led to him taking his own life.During World War II, the mathematical genius worked at Bletchley Park to crack the German Enigma codes, which is widely believed to have led to the war ending earlier than expected. Once a historical pariah, Turing has become one of Britain’s most celebrated LGBT+ heroes.

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