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The Queen

The Queen makes top secret visit to GCHQ – the UK’s Intelligence, Security and Cyber Agency

The Queen has visited the UK’s Intelligence, Security and Cyber Agency – GCHQ – to mark the centenary of the organisation.

Her Majesty made an unannounced visit to Watergate House – a formerly top secret location – on Thursday morning.

During the visit, The Queen encountered two generations of women in the world of cybersecurity, meeting Ruth Bourne, a Bletchley Park codebreaking veteran and Legion d’Honneur recipient, alongside the winners of CyberFirst.

CyberFirst is a GCHQ competition for girls aged 12 to 13 to help ensure women are better represented in the cyber workforce of tomorrow.

To celebrate the centenary, the 92-year-old monarch viewed a series of historical artefacts spanning GCHQ’s history.

Before she departed, The Queen unveiled a commemorative plaque to mark Watergate House as GCHQ’s first home and to commemorate 100 years since its formation.

The Queen has previously visited GCHQ on a number of occasions, most recently in 2017 for the opening of the organisation’s new National Cyber Security Centre in London.

Her Majesty has also visited GCHQ’s Cheltenham headquarters on three previous occasions in 2008, 2004 and 1995.