A secret code attached to the leg of a WW2 carrier pigeon found dead in a chimney cannot be cracked, Government intelligence officials said today.
The encrypted note was in a red capsule tied to the limb of a ‘spy’ pigeon discovered by stunned homeowner David Martin.
David, 74, found the animal in his chimney and it is thought it died on its way to Britain from France during the Second World War.
David passed the note to experts at UK Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) in Cheltenham, Glos, who said they would decipher its meaning.
But their top team of intelligence officers now say they cannot crack the code and the pigeon’s secrets will die with him.
David, 74, of Bletchingley, Surrey, says GCHQ’s claims of not being able to crack the code means it must be top secret information.
He told SWNS: ”I always understood there was no code that couldn’t be cracked. I am beginning to think this message contains highly-sensitive orders.”
The note contains 27 codes each made up of combinations of five numbers and letters.
It was addressed to X02 possibly Bomber Command – by a Serjeant W Stot, a non-commissioned officer in the Army.
But GCHQ say the code was ”so skilfully written” they cannot discover its meaning without access to the original codebooks.
During the war many cryptographic materials and codebooks were destroyed on Winston Churchill’s orders.
Experts believe the pigeon may have been flying back to General Montgomery Headquarters in Reigate, Surrey or Bletchley Park, Bucks.