Jane Fawcett was a young woman from London. After the war, she pursued a career in singing and, later on, a heritage preserver. But, despite her seemingly innocent and gentle appearance, Fawcett was credited with an action that would make her outstanding and worthy of admiration: identifying the message that led to the sinking of the German battleship Bismarck. Here’s how she did it.

Before There Was Jane Fawcett

Before she became the Jane Fawcett, she was Janet Carolin Hughes, born and raised in London on March 4, 1921. She attended Miss Ironside’s School for Girls in Kensington as a kid. She also trained as a ballet dancer and enrolled at the Royal Ballet School. She wanted to pursue a ballet career. However, when she was 17, she was told she was too tall to be a professional dancer. This remark put a period on her career as a ballet dancer.

She was then sent to Zurich to learn how to read and write in German, a skill that would be useful later in her life. Finally, after six months, her parents asked her to return home for her debut — a formal celebration when a young woman, the debutante, from an upper-class family, has reached maturity and presented to society as a new adult. For Jane, the event was unnecessary and a waste of time. Thankfully for her, a friend invited her to apply to the Bletchley Park Project.

Government Code and Cipher Schools

During World War II, Bletchley Park was the main center of Allied code-breaking. It was an English country house and estate in Bletchley, Milton Keynes. It was constructed after 1883 for Sir Herbert Leon in the Victorian Gothic, Tudor, and Dutch Baroque styles.