Ex James Watt Sparkies

Gordon L Smeaton
11th June 2007, 17:54
Hello All

Interested in locating any ex Radio Officer who studied at the James Watt Memorial College Greenock especially the years 1965-66. I started in the January 65 intake left June 66 with PMG 2nd Class and BoT Radar Maintenance. Spent my entire career with BP Tankers.

Gordon L Smeaton

11th June 2007, 18:22
Hello Gordon,

Slightly before you, September '61 - February '63. Spent my (short) career at sea with Brocklebank.

All the best,


Tony Selman
11th June 2007, 19:01

I took my radar ticket at James Watt in the spring and early summer of 1965 which fits pretty neatly into your time frame. I think I arrived in late April or early May and left in mid July or thereabouts. I was one of three Brocklebank R/O's who took their radar tickets at the same time. It says a great deal about the quality of the teaching that all three of us passed despite an extremely hedonistic lifestyle on a seagoing salary plus expenses which meant very little work until the last minute panic!

Kind regards


30th November 2007, 17:07
Like many Brocklebank R/Os, in the late 1950s, I was sent along to the James Watt to get my radar ticket (I already had PMG 1st from Hull). In Brocks you did a couple or so trips as 2r/o and then had to go for your radar ticket before they would promote you.

James Watt was a good school - I cannot remember the name of the radar tutor but I do recall that he was partly instrumental in getting Police Radar traps off the ground in the UK.

I think the BTH "True Motion" Radars were just coming into fashion but my earliest expeince, in Brocks, was an ancient admiralty (268?) on the Mahout.

Stayed at the Seamans' Mission, in Greenock, for the first week or so. It was customary to wake sleepers up with a bugle in the mornings.

After that I spent my evenings staying in digs up in Greenock.

16th October 2008, 21:00
Hi I trained at James Watt, entered 1962 till early 1964 took about 5 months to get my first job which was as 3R/O with the RFA in Singapore. Great College, the statue of James Watt still looks out from his plinth. Heaven knows how many of us have have left there for the far flung parts of the globe. I had a bit of a problem sending certain morse characters. Matt Rodgers sorted it out.