THEY were lost in a old cupboard at HMS Collingwood for 30 years.
But now the missing parts of a Second World War Enigma machine have been handed over to go on display in a museum in Portsmouth.
The spare rotors were discovered by sailors when they cleaned out a store cupboard in the old HMS Mercury signals school building at Collingwood, Fareham.
The parts belonged to an Enigma machine which was donated from Mercury to the naval museum at Portsmouth Dockyard in 1983.
They somehow became separated in the move, but now Collingwood’s commanding officer, Commodore Mike Mansergh, has handed the spare parts over to National Museum of the Royal Navy so they can go on show with the Enigma Machine there.
Richard Noyce, who is a curator at the museum based in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, said: ‘We are thrilled to be reuniting them again as they are a key part of our history.’
Germany used Enigma cipher machines during the war to keep their communications secret.
Historians say Britain’s capture of the machines and the breaking of the code shortened the war by two years.