Benedict Cumberbatch on the Ghosts of Bletchley Park

  |  Published: Dec 2nd 2014



Speaking to the Bletchley Park Trust as The Imitation Game hit cinemas, Benedict Cumberbatch, who plays Codebreaker Alan Turing said “Filming at Bletchley Park was amazing. The parts where we were at Bletchley Park were magical moments in the filming schedule. It really was very special. You really feel like you're playing slightly with ghosts. It's nerve-racking, fictionalising what happened.”


Visitors to Bletchley Park can now go behind the scenes of the movie at The Imitation Game, The Exhibition, in the very room where the film's bar scenes were filmed on location at Bletchley Park. Entering the exhibition on a red carpet in the Billiard Room, visitors first see costumes worn by the stars, Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley as Alan Turing and Joan Clarke, as well as the boys at Sherborne School, where a young Alan was played by Alex Lawther. Once inside the Ballroom itself, fans can pose for a photo in the very bar seen in the film, and discover more behind the scenes gems.


The array of items on display include the Enigma intercepts Alan Turing stuffs into his socks and trousers to sneak them off site, the scribbles made by John Cairncross (played by Downton Abbey’s Allen Leech) and the prototype Bombe machine Turing names Christopher.


Benedict Cumberbatch adds that it’s “hugely important” that Bletchley Park is kept alive and accessible. “To work where these people breathed, lived, loved, worked, struggled, kept secrets, were quietly, stoically heroic, was overwhelming.


“It’s incredibly important that it’s open to the public, and is something that’s well funded and supported and continues, because this is our history.”


You can hear more of Benedict Cumberbatch speaking to the Bletchley Park Trust, as well as Director Morten Tyldum, screenwriter Graham Moore and co-stars Allen Leech and Matthew Beard, in the Bletchley Park Podcast.

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