“Today we celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the birth of Able Seamen Colin Grazier, born May 7th, 1920, Tamworth’s Enigma Code Hero.
“As we honour the anniversary of VE Day and reflect on the sacrifices made, the story of Colin Grazier is one we continue to share. The heroism of Francis Fasson, Tommy Brown and Grazier when they dived into the sinking submarine and worked in complete darkness fully aware that the submarine could sink without warning at any time is known to so many local people , Fasson and Grazier located documents, which Brown carried up to men above. They continued searching until the submarine lurched and slipped beneath the waters with Fasson and Grazier trapped forever inside.
“The codebooks that Fasson, Grazier, and Brown retrieved were immensely valuable to the code-breakers at Bletchley Park and helped to break U-boat Enigma thereafter. It is estimated that cracking the codes shortened the war by up to two to four years, saving potentially millions of lives. The ultimate sacrifice was made and for outstanding bravery and steadfast devotion to duty in the face of danger.
“We have never forgotten the ultimate sacrifice that Grazier made, in fact we see his memory live on throughout our town. In the Colin Grazier Hotel which contains a gallery of photographs, in Editha’s Square and Walenty Pytel's striking anchor sculpture, in the names of local roads we still remember them.
“Sadly, the Coronavirus pandemic has prevented us from coming together and celebrating his birth. Dr David Biggs of the Tamworth and District Civic Society put together a wonderful commemorative order of service with many local, regional and national community members coming together to celebrate this centenary. We are grateful for the efforts of TDCS.
“I hope that once this Coronavirus pandemic passes and a degree of normality returns to our town, we can come together and remember Grazier’s memory and sacrifice as we have always done. Even in times like these the memory of past sacrifice must not be forgotten.”
Be sure to visit the Colin Grazier Memorial on St Editha's Square as part of your daily exercise today, those anchors so far away from the sea...A hat tip to the man who helped us break the Enigma codes and a well known secret of Tamworth.