In Alan Turing's Name

March 2019

This special panel discussion brought together authorities on Alan Turing and the statutory pardon legislation intended to honour him. The Turing Bill was a 2016 Private Member’s Bill intended to pardon all men – both living and dead – found guilty of homosexual offences no longer on the statute book. Initially promised Conservative Government support, the Bill was instead filibustered and replaced by an amendment to the 2017 Policing and Crime Act. That posthumous pardon covers over 50,000 dead men – including Oscar Wilde – who were cautioned or convicted under historical legislation that outlawed homosexual acts. But it has bitterly disappointed those still living with the burden of convictions. The panel discussed the significance of the lost law and the consequences of the existing pardon.

This event took place as part of the public programme for The Oscar Wilde Temple.

  1. This event was convened by Justin Bengry, who leads the Queer History MA at Goldsmiths, University of London. Contributors include: Katy Watts, a solicitor with the Public Law Project; Terry Stewart, an activist of more than four decades who has been denied a pardon; Chris Waters, professor of Modern European History at Williams College, Massachusetts and leading Alan Turing historian; and John Nicolson, journalist, broadcaster and the SNP politician who authored the Turing Bill.

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