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G3XHB England flag England

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G3XHB circa 1970I first became interested in amateur radio in my teens after a brief flirt with radio astronomy. Started SWL with a surplus Pye PCR2 receiver and then a Marconi Electra. I was granted a full license in 1969 and operated forces surplus and home brew rigs for a year or two. A Creed 7B was also aquired and made to work (more or less). My QTH was then Ovingham, in the Tyne valley. There was an active little group in the village, G4LV, G8BGU (now G0NEE) and Chris (callsign unknown but I'm sure he'll have one) Marriage, children and challenging work came along and amateur radio drifted out of my life. Most of my gear was sold, lost or left behind. (It all looks rather tatty now! See photo)

However, a chance comment by my son Paul earlier this year (2014) set me reminising and a little casual internet research revealed web SDRs. I was suddenly SW Listening again, courtesy of Hack Green. Now Ofcom have allowed me my old callsign back, ebay provided a Yaesu FT-757GX, Lamco an 8m vertical and I was back on the air.

Richmond. from Maison Dieu

My QTH is now Richmond, on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales, a market town built around an old Norman castle. It is the originator of the name and thought to be from the Norman french 'Riche Mont', ie strong hill. All other Richmonds in the world, and there are many, derive in some way from here.

My QTH

Here's a view of the QTH from the back garden.  The only antenna visible here is the HF vertical, but this has now been taken down for the winter (14/15).  The present aerial is a G5RV, supported at one end by the mast on the gable end and the other from the 2m slim jim mast by the shack.  Another mast made from aluminium tubes supports a 5 element 6m beam, a 2m 9ele PowaBeam and a 70cms 21 ele Tonna, tho' not all at the same time. This mast varies from 5 to about 8m agl depending on the weather. Rigs in use currently (Feb 2016) are a Yaesu FT-1000MP and a Kenwood TS-2000.

I have a good send off to the East and South, less so the North and West.  On a clear day I can see the top of the chimney at Ferrybridge. On 2m I can hear the Walkington repeater to the South and the Gateshead repeater to the North. The Crook and Thirsk repeaters are fully workable and of course GB3IR is just a few hundred yards away. I can hear it without an aerial. The GB3VHF beacon in Kent, 230miles distant, can be heard every time I've tried. Quite a good spot really.

For 3 seasons of the year I operate in the 2m and 70 cms UKAC from the high car park at the old Richmond racecourse. This sits at about 240m asl with a more open aspect than the home QTH. Fortunately it has the same locator so I only have to remember to add the  /P!

My WAB book number is 20755 and square is NZ10.

 

 

 

7077614 Last modified: 2016-02-10 14:29:52, 3707 bytes

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