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Amateur Radio club

In July 2008, Telford & Wrekin Amateur Radio Society set up a new home in Little Wenlock Village Hall. The following introduction gives an idea of their activities.

Hello to all at Little Wenlock, we wanted to give you a short introduction to the Radio Club, what it does and tell you about the aerials we have erected on the side of the village hall and how they are used.
Telford & District Amateur Radio Society, known as TDARS, was founded in 1969 in Wellington and has had many homes since, most recently Dawley Bank Community Centre. Unfortunately as a result of T&W cost cutting the centre is to be demolished and we had to find a new home after almost 20 years. This led to us working with the Little Wenlock Village Hall Committee to establish a new home here.

We are a very sociable club with a wide range of interests. Most years, society members take part in a Dx-pedition (DX is a term associated with long distance transmissions) to a remote place. Four years ago we visited Slieve Croob in Northern Ireland. This year we did what we call the Marconi Heritage trail operating from one of Marconi’s old operating stations in Wales. Field Days ( a competition to make as many contacts with other amateurs over 24 hours as possible) are regularly entered; this year in 2008 would have found us on the Long Mynd, near to Pole Bank. on 5th/6th July.

Members' activities range from Morse code to digital signals. Many members build their own equipment. Experienced assistance is always on hand to builders and we run all the licencing courses needed to allow people to get on the air. Every few years we run Morse courses to build up members skills on the air. For several years running we have done science sessions in local primary schools and this year will be running a public session at Enginuity in Ironbridge. In September we will be running the 3rd Hamfest at the ‘hands-on’ Enginuity Museum in Coalbrookdale. A Hamfest is something we run to allow amateurs across the region to meet, discuss, buy and sell equipment and meet professional traders.

The two poles on the side of the village hall support our contribution to two very important UK wide networks. The one furthest away from the road supports a voice repeater. This allow people to talk to the repeater and the signal is relayed out. What this allows is local amateurs to have coverage over a large area of Shropshire without having to use high power to operate. The voice repeater is in a great location where height and clearance of obstacles allow us to have an operating area down the M54 past Wolverhampton and east close to the Welsh borders.

The other pole hosts our beacon on some of the very high frequency bands. Propagation on all bands depends on a lot of factors including atmospheric conditions and the change of state of various layers of the atmosphere (ionosphere, troposphere) caused by the sun. As such conditions suitable for transmission go up and down. The beacons are used nationally and internationally to monitor for good propagation conditions, and in turn we also monitor beacons in the UK and beyond on the lookout for conditions where we are able to communicate with people further afield."

The club meets at little Wenlock Village Hall on Wednesdays at 7.30 - 10.00 pm