Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Weston boasts a proud affiliation with long-distance communication dating back to the 19th century.
The Italian inventor, Guglielmo Marconi (1874-1937), one of the most famous names in messages, first demonstrated wireless communication from Brean Down in 1897.
The event was commemorated by Weston Radio Society 100 years later, as the group aims to ensure the town maintains its links with this important historical event.
Marconi Close in Weston pays tribute to the man from Bologna.
Club chairman David Dyer, who has been tinkering with radio sets since he was a youngster, said: "It is the most fantastic hobby to be able to speak to people on the other side of the world.
"We can even communicate with the American astronauts at the International Space Station orbiting Earth.
"The conversations are varied and usually involve discussions about what type of kit is being used and what communications they have had with other people.
"Weston's beach is great for reception and all users have broadly the same interests."
The 59-year-old, who lives in Locking Road, used to work for Ofcom, the Government's communications watchdog, regulating amateur radio users across the South West.
Now retired, he helps to train people who want to learn about the hobby.
The club has organised a 12-week training course for newcomers that will take place at its base in Devonshire Road.
Learners who want to gain a licence will then take an Ofcom exam that will test their technical knowledge and safety aspects such as working with electricity.
Dave added: "It's important that people know how to guard against interfering with the emergency services by accident. But we are always looking for new people to join us."
* Name of club: Weston Radio Society
* Founded: 1923.
* Membership: Around 50.
* Who the club caters for: Radio amateurs in Weston who want to further their knowledge.
* Meeting place and time: Every third Monday of the month in Weston Social Club, in Devonshire Road, at 8pm.
* Who to contact for more details: Club secretary Kirstie on 01934 613094.