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Discussion Starter #1
As mentioned in a previous thread I am currently in the final stages of writing the complete history of Portishead Radio/GKA. I still have a little bit of research to complete on some of the services which the station offered, but intend to have my first draft completed by the end of March.

2020 is the 100th anniversary of the long-range maritime radio service in the UK which started from Devizes Radio/GKT in 1920, so this year would probably the opportune time to get the history published.

To make some light reading between the (necessary) technical information, I would be very pleased to receive any stories about working GKA (factual or humorous), any comments about the station over the years, or simply a few memories of the old place. All stories used will be credited, unless any names need to be changed to protect the innocent. Or even if you wish to remain anonymous.....

You can private message me on here, or send an email via the website link on www.portisheadradio.co.uk - or directly to portishead.radio(at)btinternet.com if you like.

I will of course give the book full publicity when available to purchase.

Larry +
 

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Have you heard of the one about Welsh R/O who told a certain Princess to **** *** at 0300hrs thinking her call was a spoof when she asked for an r/t call to a certain ship?
 

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Was on a ship and had an electronic keyer(supplied). I practised with it for ages. When I was happy I was competent with it, I called up GKA with a long QTC. Getting the QSO was ok, but when I started sending the QTC, nerves cut in, and I was making errors. GKA BKed me and told me to use the normal key. I very quickly swapped them over, and sent the QTC. After the QSL he gave me the normal TU. I think he meant it! I never touched that keyer again, but stuck with what I had been taught.
 

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Saving paper

My name is Shane OConnor and was R/O at GKA around 1978. During my time there, there was a drive to cut down on the use of paper. An economy drive! One day a tiny square of paper was put up on the notice board by one of the supervisors. On it was a lot of writing telling us just how much information could be crammed into a small space. Later that afternoon a sheet of Telex paper with a small square the size of the piece previously put on the notice board, cut out of it, was pinned up with a note saying that this had been found in the supervisors waste bin!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
My name is Shane OConnor and was R/O at GKA around 1978. During my time there, there was a drive to cut down on the use of paper. An economy drive! One day a tiny square of paper was put up on the notice board by one of the supervisors. On it was a lot of writing telling us just how much information could be crammed into a small space. Later that afternoon a sheet of Telex paper with a small square the size of the piece previously put on the notice board, cut out of it, was pinned up with a note saying that this had been found in the supervisors waste bin!
Hi Shane, lovely story but sadly too late for the book which is currently in the hands of the publishers. I've put it on the GKA Facebook page and a few of the old lags remember the story. Apparently the overseer involved was Russ Taylor.

A similar economy drive happened in the 1980s when it was decided to rewind/reuse telex rolls - the Maintenance Officer had to collect all the used rolls and rewind them so that the reverse side could be used again. This was fine until a notice appeared on the board advising staff that toilet rolls would be rewound and used again for 'reasons of economy'. One would suspect this notice may not have been official.

You must have joined/left GKA pretty quickly, I joined in January 1980 and must admit your name doesn't ring any bells. Mind you the turnover of staff at the time was pretty phenomenal so not really surprising.

Larry +
 
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