Here’s a day out idea for all the family.
The National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park, an independent charity, houses the largest collection of functional historic computers in Europe, including a rebuilt Colossus, the world’s first electronic programmable computer.
The Museum complements the Bletchley Park Trust’s story of code breaking up to the Colossus and allows visitors to follow the development of computing from the ultra-secret pioneering efforts of the 1940s through the mainframes of the 1960s and 1970s, and the rise of personal computing in the 1980s. New working exhibits are regularly unveiled and the public can already view a rebuilt and fully operational Colossus, the restoration of the Harwell / WITCH computer, and an ICL 2966, one of the workhorse mainframes computers of the 1980s, plus many of the earliest desktops of the 1980s and 1990s. The latest display is the much-talked-about Technology of the Internet gallery. In June 2010 TNMOC hosted Britain’s first-ever Vintage Computer Festival.
Funders of the Museum include Bletchley Park Capital Partners, BCS, PGP Corporation, IBM, NPL, HP Labs, InsightSoftware.com, Black Marble, and the School of Computer Science at the University of Hertfordshire.
The Museum is currently open on Thursdays and Saturdays from 1pm, and on Bank Holidays in spring and summer. Guided tours are also available at 2.30pm on Tuesdays and some other days. Groups may visit at other times by arrangement.
For more information, see www.tnmoc.org and follow @tnmoc on Twitter.