The Radio Pages
Welcome to my site, I operate my Amateur Radio Station from Minster on Sea, Isle of Sheppey.
Isle of Sheppey is an island off the North Kent coast linked by two bridges, my QTH is about 75 feet above sea level so is a challenge for VHF operation.
My first interest in Radio was back in the 60's when I was a member of the Ealing and District Amateur Radio Society, I remember with pleasure our half hour Morse code practice sessions every week, it must have helped as I still remember most of it, thanks to Bernie Page G3KLK and Bill Teal G3SGT who used to run the club. I started my City & Guilds RAE course, but like many young chaps decided that girls and motorbikes were far more interesting. (I sold my last motorbike, 1997 Honda Goldwing in November 2012)
Back then I had a B40d receiver, see link purchased from GW Smith in Lisle St, Soho, a dealer that has long gone, see vintage radio link, I think it's fair to say most amateurs then used ex military equipment and home-brews. I have always had an electrical/electronic job, I started out as an apprentice electrician with a contracting company then moved to GEC upgrading BT exchanges, that was when the Strowger electro-mechanical system was being used, those exchanges were very big and noisy, then onto vehicle electrics as an auto electrician, I worked on cars, buses and trucks, I then moved into IT with a local bus company.
It was during 2011, I decided it was time to get back into radio, I joined the Maidstone club, MYARS and got the Foundation ticket and passed the intermediate at the end of April 2012. I'm no longer a member of MYARS but have passed my advanced exam with the help of the Bath Distance Learning and BRATS, I sat the exam on 1st July 2013 and got my M0KLK callsign on 10th July 2013. I chose the KLK call sign as it was Bernie, G3KLK, who first sparked my interest in amateur radio. I was treasurer and member of the Swale Amateur Radio Club until October 2015 when the club closed due to lack of members, I'm a member of MARTS Medway and BRATS Bredhurst radio clubs.
I started with a Kenwood TS570SG and then moved on to an Icom 756Pro. Early 2012 I installed a collinear on a mast at about 25 ft from the ground for 2mtrs and 70cms and a 2mtr/70cms beam on a mast at the back of the house at about 22ft.
I originally had wire dipoles in my attic for 6,10,17, 20 and 40 mtrs but due to high noise levels I installed a half size G5RV in the garden in March 2012, despite many people telling me it's not the antenna to buy, so far I'm happy with it. It has a 22ft fibreglass pole in the centre making it slightly inverted V.
I was put on risk of redundancy after 18 years on 1st October 2012 as there was to be some re-structure of the IT departments, but I was told to apply for the new job as they didn't want me to go.
Following all the feelings that go with that dreadful word I thought perhaps I should take the offer and retire early, (more time to play radio I thought), so I finally got away on the 3rd May 2013 and I'm now enjoying retirement.
Since getting my full license I now have more time to to think of other avenues in radio to follow. I tried PSK31 at the BRATS shack and decided to have a go at that, so ordered a few bits to build the interface. I've had many contacts and quite enjoy using this particular digital mode. I'm also interested in Morse, so I will brush up on what I already know and hopefully in time will get going on the bands. I've decided to just use eQSL for QSL cards, but will send paper cards via the bureau if requested, eQSL works well and cards can be exchanged on the day you make the contact.
In January 2014 I was approved by the RSGB to train and assess the practical projects for Foundation and Intermediate trainees at the BRATS club.
Keith, M0KJA and I have assessed many Foundation and Intermediate practicals, all the candidates bar one have passed their exams first time and the one that failed passed on his second attempt.
I had a successful couple of hours on the Railways on the Air weekend 27th September 2014, which also coincided with Air Ambulance week. I had plenty of contacts and despite some huge pile ups I worked all the stations I heard.
Had a go at the UKAC contest on 7th October 2014, got hooked and entered the 2mtr, 4mtr, 6mtr and 70cms contest ever since.
The guys from Worked All Britain were at the BRATS Rainham rally in February 2015 so I decided to sign up, 7.160 MHz, the WAB net, is frequency I'd always avoided as I had been caught there previously, since joining I called in on the net one Saturday and had a baptism of fire with 18 QSO's in almost as many minutes, good fun though...
You will hear me mainly on 20 and 40 metres SSB although I also enjoy PSK, I also use 2 metre and 70cms FM and SSB, plus I've just started experimenting with DSTAR
My previous call signs were
WAB Square TQ97
Book number 20872
There are many useful amateur radio sites on my LINKS PAGE, plus some other interesting sites, need to find your WAB or grid square, there's a link ready for you to click.
Why Isle of Sheppey...
We moved to the Isle of Sheppey ten years ago as I worked in Maidstone before I took early retirement in May 2013, it was more convenient than travelling over sixty miles to work from our previous home near Guildford, Surrey.
We are very much involved in Cats Protection, my XYL, was the volunteer co-ordinator and welfare person of the Swale Branch, she took on the role April 2010 until December 2014, she is now doing some admin and fundraising following her retirement. I am the Swale Branch volunteer publicity officer, membership sectretary and also produce the newsletters and look after the website at, www.cats.org.uk/swale.
We have just one cat ourselves she is sixteen years old, we have had cats all our married life so we certainly have a good understanding of the feline. Do have a look at the cat and cat photos pages, you will see Teagan, our present cat and the two most recent boys we had.
There are also pages with general photos and another with various views of the Isle of Sheppey. You will also find pages for Swale club, and my on line log book.