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War-time code breaker secret docs go online

Millions of secret documents which haven't seen the light of day since World War II are about to be scanned and uploaded to the Internet.

The archive - which was created by 10,000 military code-breakers at the Bletchley Park facility near Milton Keynes - will be scanned using equipment thought to be worth tens of thousands of pounds as well as technical advice donated by Hewlett Packard.

Apparently the archive is so large that no-one really knows what it contains. It has been gathering dust in thousands of boxes at the Buckinghamshire site since the outbreak of peace in 1945.

The once-secret paper trail is expected to turn up previously-unknown information about supply lines, troop movements and could even embarrass entire nations, as countries like Switzerland and Spain may not have been quite as neutral as they officially made out.

The archive could also bring to light the activities of several infamous spies, messages from whom were often intercepted by the army of code-breakers billeted at the secret facility throughout the war.

The first phase of the project is expected to take up to three years, but as no-one really knows how much material is included in the archive, it's anyone's guess as to how long it will take to complete.