Bletchely Park Post Office
The latest collection to arrive at Oakham Treasures is the Bletchley Park Post Office.
This undercover mailroom for World War Two code breakers that later became a post office has now been recreated following its former home at Bletchley Park.
Around 1900 a small building was added to the side of Bletchley Park mansion to serve as the butler's quarters close to the kitchens, cellar and stores. When Bletchley became a top secret code breaking base at the start of World War Two Quartermaster Robert Budd established it as an undercover mailroom.
In those days people kept in touch with distant friends and relatives particularly those serving overseas, by writing letters. Bletchley Park had to be especially careful that letters sent and received did not provide enemy agents with clues about the work that it was engaged on. So the mailroom used undercover PO Box numbers such as PO BOX 111 Bletchley and routed mail through different locations to avoid revealing Bletchley Park's real purpose. Everyone had to follow strict rules and censorship when posting mail overseas.
Around 1947 the GPO turned it into a sub post office and shop that continued to run for nearly 40 years.