On the warm August evening of Wednesday 18th August, Bracknell Amateur Radio Club members from the last 50years joined together to celebrate the clubs fiftieth year on the air at a celebration BBQ.
Current members, many having been with the club since its formation in 1971 were joined by founder members that we had not seen for many years. Some, such as Dave M0GHZ travelling all the way from Biddestone in Wiltshire to join us. There was a lot of catching-up between members and recollection of past club events and past activities.
Martin 2E0XBZ and his wife Shirley kindly hosted the event for us in their beautiful garden with multiple gazebos and lots of space to seat for all 25 guests. Martin and Shirley prepared all the hot food and guests also brought along food, salad, drinks and puddings. My personal favourite was the most amazing Tiramisu made by Francesco’s (M7TBF) wife.
The evening started with an address from our Chairman Steve G4AUC welcoming all to the event and reading a letter received from one of our early members Steve Rawlings (G4ALG) who remembered his first QSO with G4BRA in 1973:
My best wishes to all members of the Bracknell Amateur Radio Club, both past and present. I’m sure that the assembled gathering for the 50th anniversary celebrations will be a time to remember some great times, and some great people.
From my logbook, I see that my first QSO with G4BRA was at 20:45 on 8th January 1973 on 144 MHz phone, when I was G4ALG in Twyford. I think that this was also G4BRA’s first ever QSO (although I’m not sure that the QSO ever got into the G4BRA logbook!). The operator was Clive, but with several other members of BARC present. The notes in my logbook indicate that G4BRA was running a Pye Cambridge and a Trio 9R59DS with a 10 element antenna. I was running 0.5 watts from a home made AM/CW TX on 144.23 MHz. My report to G4BRA was 59, and I received 57.
I believe that our second QSO was on 18th August 1973 — exactly 48 years ago! G4BRA was operating portable from ZL26F, 23 k SE of Oxford. The operator was Graham, G4DDN. I was using the same home made AM/CW TX, and operating with Mike Adams G3ZLQ as G4ALG/P, 9 k S of Thame.
With best wishes to allSteve Rawlings, G4ALG
Members also enjoyed looking around Martin’s immaculate Shack and rummaging through the swap and table top sale table which included some great items.
A small free raffle was held once all had enjoyed the BBQ and drinks and chat under the colourful garden lighting continued until late in the evening when we then moved into the conservatory for tea and coffee before setting off home.
The BBQ was so successful that we are already talking about holding a similar event next year!
Thank you to everyone that attended to share our special celebration.