BULLETIN BOARD

Britain at War are sad to report the death of one of the last remaining Chindits veterans. Philip Bullock, 93, served with Brig. Orde Wingate during the Burma Campaign. Formed to cause havoc behind Japanese lines, the Long Range Penetration Groups took the informal name of ‘The Chinthes’ in honour of the mythological lion-like creature found outside Burmese temples. Originally suggested by Captain Aung Thin (Burma Rifles), the name became corrupted into ‘Chindits’. Mr Bullock served with one of the most well-known Chindit commanders, Lt-Col. James Michael ‘Mad Mike’ Calvert, in 77th Brigade. In later life he was a churchwarden at St Bartholemew’s Church, Grimley, and was a poppy seller for the Royal British Legion for more than 50 years.

A four-rotor M4 Enigma cipher machine has set a new auction record at Christie’s, Rockefeller Center, New York. The rare machine, owned by an American collector, sold for US$547,500 (£444,246). The previous record for a similar M4 was US$463,500 (£358,413). Only around 100 M4 Enigma machines are thought to survive today, out of the approximate 1,600 produced. It was used to send communications between German Naval High Command and U-boat wolf packs attacking Allied shipping, with most of the machines lost due to the sinking of the U-boats. Like the Enigma M3, the M4 used a complicated series of electromechanical circuits running through banks of four rotors and plugs that could be programmed to produce an incredible number of unique sequences to foil decryption experts. The machine could generate 153 trillion possible sequences.