Dilly by Mavis Batey

by stephenpalmersf

Dilly: The Man Who Broke Enigmas is an account by Mavis Batey not only of the great code-breaker Alfred Dillwyn Knox, but of the whole wartime code-breaking effort centred in Bletchley Park. Mavis Batey was one of “Dilly’s girls,” in fact she was one of two particular women whose brilliance helped the mercurial and eccentric Dilly. This biography spends a little time on his upbringing and education, before heading off into his WW1 work, but it is really WW2, Bletchley Park and Enigma which it focuses on.

Written with sensitivity and charm, and with many personal anecdotes, it’s a great account of a man whose work made an enormous difference to our lives.