The Somerset and Dorset Railway Heritage Trust are based at the former Midsomer Norton South Railway Station. The postal address is Midsomer Norton Station, Silver Street, Midsomer Norton, BA3 2EY. However, there are some specific details that will be of interest to radio hams:

  • Lat/Long: 51.281077°,-2.482759°
  • IARU: IO81sg
  • IOTA: EU005 (UK Mainland)
  • WAB: ST65 – England


PosterThis year the Railways on the Air commemorative weekend took place over the 22nd and 23rd of September. As last year the South Bristol Amateur Radio Club was invited to operate from the Somerset and Dorset Railway Heritage Trust at the Midsomer Norton South Station

Although it was only 12 months since we had operated from here, the Trust had plainly been working hard having extended the length of operational track and acquired a Diesel Multiple Unit that ferried passengers up and down the working line. This provided a much more comfortable ride than last years brake van and was a welcome warm and dry haven on Sunday when the weather turned wet and cold.

Station Setup

After the obligatory search for dead bodies that are seemingly de rigeur in a town with the name Midsomer anything we decided that there was absolutely no need to contact Chief Inspector Barnaby and we got on with the serious business of putting an Amateur Radio station on the air.

Either because of last years learning experience, or because we elected to keep things simple this year and almost certainly because we had plenty of bodies on Saturday morning, setting up the station was a relatively quick 45 minutes from arrival to first CQ. The Trust had kindly placed a table in the platform shelter in readiness for us.

This years station comprised:

  • Manson EP-925 25A Linear Power Supply
  • Yeasu FT-840 HF 100W HF Transceiver
  • MFJ-934 Manual ATU
  • 10m Pro Whip Antenna
  • Dell Laptop running HRD (only used for logging)

Saturday 22 September 2012

Tom M3TWJ and Henryk M0HTB operating GB0SDRGB0SDR - Radio Station on a Railway StationPro Whip Delta Loop

As can be seen from the photos above and immediately below Saturdays weather was fine, plenty of sunshine giving a pleasant operating environment. First contact was with GM3TKV at the Keith Dufftown Railway, followed only 3 – 4 minutes later by GB0DMR the Belfast and County Down Minature Railway. The Special Event Stations continued to roll in with GX3ERD/P operating from the Princess Royal Class Locomotive Trust. By the end of the day we had worked 53 Radio Stations with 10 of these being Special Event Stations. Overall we felt this was a good start to the weekend.

GB0SDR - Radio Station on a Railway StationHear No Evil, See No Evil, Speak No Evil - Peter G0DRX operates with Chris M6CXB logging and Julian M6JCE observing

We had a number of visitors on the Saturday, many were local hams dropping by to have a look at our station and chat about things generally. We were also visited by the local paper and a few photos were taken so we may have some minor celebrities amongst our number.

Members of the club came and went throughout the day so I'm sure to miss someone or put them on the wrong day, but thanks should go in no particular order to: Fred G7LPP, Henryk M0HTB, Tom M3TWJ, Chris M6CXB, Ashley M6USP, Julian M6JCE, Peter G0DRX, Ben 2E0RCG and Dave M3JDK.

Sunday 23 September 2012

Wet and cold platformTom M3TWJ braves the elementsLet's see... Yes, still raining

The weather forecast had been for a turn to the worse in weather conditions, and what do you know? For once the weather forecasters got it right. Typical when you actually think about it, the one time we would have happily accepted an incorrect forecast they got it right.

So faced with wetter and colder conditions we pressed on with the event, our only concession to the conditions being the removal of the chairs from in front of the operating table and the addition of a small tarpaulin rain/wind screen in front of the operating table. This was more to protect the equipment than the operators, after all we are real Hams and the equipment is more valuable than we are!

The event started more slowly than on the Saturday, partly we suspect because Sunday morning is often the time for regular nets and partly because we heard the HMS Belfast Special Event Station GB2RN and were keen to take our turn in the long list of stations trying to work the ship. We succeeded and GB2RN made the first entry in todays log.

We worked fewer Special Event Stations this time, Foxfield Light Railway were amongst the RotA registered stations that we bagged on Sunday morning along with the Ribble Steam Railway. We worked GW0VSW in Skewen who is the author of the HF Highlights column in Practical Wireless. Details of our event will be sent to him directly and may appear in Practical Wireless.

The last railway we worked was Bredgar and Wormshill Light Railway. The afternoon didn't end there for us however. Ashley M6USP took the mic for the closing hour of the event. He is a new operator having passed his Foundation Licence with the club only 6 months previously in February and had very little HF experience under his belt. Initially a little apprehensive he quickly warmed to his time on the mic and was welcomed by many stations. In fact when it became apparent that he was a new HF operator it seemed as though stations made an effort to work us and he found himself the target of a small pile-up which was quite daunting although he handled it very well. It was great that so many stations took the time to queue up and work us during the last hour of our operation.

Dave G7BYN operating with Ashley M6USP logging. Julian M6JCE observesTom M3TWJ operating solo

By the end of the day we had worked 44 stations bringing out total to 97 for the weekend. We added 4 Special Event stations to Saturdays total leaving us with 14 for the weekend.

Again members of the club came and went but thanks should go to Tom M3TWJ, Ashley M6USP, Dave G7BYN, Julian M6JCE, Tania M6LUA and Josh M6TYK.

Event Log

Date of Contact Time Station Worked Band or Freq (MHz) Mode TX RX Operator’s Name QTH IARU Locator Distance (km) Notes
22/09/2012 09:40 GM3TKV 40m SSB 59   59   Jim       Keith Dufftown Railway
22/09/2012 09:44 GB0DMR 40m SSB 59   59   Keith County Down     Belfast and County Down Minature Railway Society
22/09/2012 09:57 G7TCW/P 40m SSB 58   59   Tim Cannock      
22/09/2012 10:02 GX3ERD/P 40m SSB 59   59   Dave       Princess Royal Class Locomotive Trust
22/09/2012 10:14 MU0GSY 40m SSB 59   59   Lionel Gurnsey      
22/09/2012 10:17 G0BFJ 40m SSB 59   59   Brian Huddersfield      
22/09/2012 10:22 G0TPK 40m SSB 59   59   Tony Berkhamsted      
22/09/2012 10:28 MW0IML/P 40m SSB 59   59   Barry Caernarfon      
22/09/2012 10:30 G6YMB 40m SSB 59   59   Bob        
22/09/2012 10:39 G1PIE 40m SSB 59   59   Mark Preston Lancashire      
22/09/2012 10:42 M3NHA 40m SSB 59   59   Tony 0.5 miles from Manchester Airport      
22/09/2012 10:44 M6NHA 40m SSB 59   59   Sara Manchester      
22/09/2012 10:47 GW4BKG 40m SSB 59   59   Stephen Porthcawl      
22/09/2012 10:49 GM3MRV 40m SSB 59   59   George Gretna      
22/09/2012 10:50 G3YOU 40m SSB 59   59   John Tonbridge Kent      
22/09/2012 10:53 G8CBU 40m SSB 59   59   Ray Luton Bedfordshire      
22/09/2012 11:04 GB5WRS 40m SSB 59   59     Paington Devon     Special Event Station
22/09/2012 11:06 2E0GBA 40m SSB 59   59   Ian Darlington      
22/09/2012 11:09 M0JCD 40m SSB 59   59   John Nantwich      
22/09/2012 11:14 M3KPY 40m SSB 59   59   John Port of Rye      
22/09/2012 11:16 2E0CJA 40m SSB 59   59   Lee Hull      
22/09/2012 11:20 G7GYM 40m SSB 59   59   Richard        
22/09/2012 11:23 G3HQS 40m SSB 59   58   Cyril        
22/09/2012 11:25 M6BMB 40m SSB 59   59   Keith South West London      
22/09/2012 11:35 G4GEW 40m SSB 59   59   Peter Coulsdon      
22/09/2012 11:45 G6UBM 40m SSB 59   59   Les Tonbridge Kent      
22/09/2012 11:49 G6LKB 40m SSB 59   59   David Ulverston      
22/09/2012 11:53 M1BYQ 40m SSB 59   59   Rob Grimsby      
22/09/2012 12:18 G1NCZ 40m SSB 59   59   Bob        
22/09/2012 12:29 GB2NMR 40m SSB 59   59   Paul Normanby Hall     Normanby Park Minature Railway
22/09/2012 12:48 GB2MBS 40m SSB 59   59   Kevin Market Bosworth      
22/09/2012 12:58 GB2NNR 40m SSB 59   59           North Norfolk Railway
22/09/2012 13:10 GB0CVR 40m SSB 59   59   John Castle Headingham     Coln Valley Railway
22/09/2012 13:13 GB4OST 40m SSB 59   59   Margaret Tintern      
22/09/2012 13:22 M3JFM 40m SSB 59   59   Paul University Of Oxford      
22/09/2012 13:26 M0XLT 40m SSB 59   59   Kevin Skipton      
22/09/2012 13:29 G3NGX/P 40m SSB 59   59   Harry South Oxfordshire      
22/09/2012 13:35 F/G4ISK 40m SSB 59   57   Dave North Brittany      
22/09/2012 13:37 G0FEX 40m SSB 59   59   Ken Leicester      
22/09/2012 13:41 2E0CEZ 40m SSB 59   57   Derek        
22/09/2012 13:46 GB0NVR 40m SSB 35   59   Dave       Nene Valley Railway
22/09/2012 13:51 GB4LBR 40m SSB 59   59   Paul North Devon     Lynton and Barnstaple Railway
22/09/2012 13:55 M0RMW 40m SSB 59   59   Roger Farnham      
22/09/2012 13:58 HB9BQR 40m SSB 59   59   Roland Switzerland      
22/09/2012 14:03 M6ESS 40m SSB 59   57   Mark Luton Bedfordshire      
22/09/2012 14:08 GW3LNR 40m SSB 59   59   Arthur Merthyr Tydfil South Wales      
22/09/2012 14:14 M0HEM 40m SSB 59   57   John Dagenham Essex      
22/09/2012 14:21 2E0ZDX 40m SSB 59   59   Phil Garstang      
22/09/2012 14:35 G4AYO 40m SSB 59   59   Mike Sheffield      
22/09/2012 14:39 G4TJY 40m SSB 57   57   Lawrence Norwich Norfolk     FT857 @ 100w
22/09/2012 14:43 G1JGT 40m SSB 59   59   John Huntingdon Cambridgeshire      
22/09/2012 14:47 GB1NNR 40m SSB 59   59   Bob Norfolk     North Norfolk Railway
22/09/2012 14:50 G3NGX/P 40m SSB 59   59   Harry Oxfordshire      
23/09/2012 10:20 GB2RN 40m SSB 57   59   Tom HMS Belfast London     Operators home QTH – Taunton G0PSE
23/09/2012 10:28 G4EZV 40m SSB 57   59   Mike Torquay Devon      
23/09/2012 10:35 M6ESS 40m SSB 47   59   Mark Luton Bedfordshire      
23/09/2012 10:45 GW3XRM 40m SSB 59   59   Dave Angelsey      
23/09/2012 10:50 GW4DWN 40m SSB 59   59   Hugh Briton Ferry      
23/09/2012 10:54 G4KVI 40m SSB 59   59   Chris Midsomer Norton     No QSL Card
23/09/2012 10:57 GB2FLR 40m SSB 59   59           Foxfield Light Railway
23/09/2012 11:03 G0VPY 40m SSB 59   59   Eric Tunbridge Wells      
23/09/2012 11:31 PC5Z 40m SSB 57   57           No QSL Card
23/09/2012 11:36 G3KAG 40m SSB 59   59   Tony Derbyshire      
23/09/2012 11:39 M3MKM 40m SSB 59   59   Davey Hertfordshire     No QSL Card
23/09/2012 11:42 F/G4ISK 40m SSB 59   59   Dave South Brittany     Second contact. No QSL Card this time.
23/09/2012 11:46 G3KYG 40m SSB 59   59   Robin Timsbury Southampton      
23/09/2012 11:50 G0FZI 40m SSB 58   59   Brian Wells Somerset      
23/09/2012 11:53 G0AYZ 40m SSB 59   59   Andy Gosport Hampshire     Running QRP
23/09/2012 11:59 M6FMC 40m SSB 58   59   Mike Wakefield Yorkshire      
23/09/2012 12:04 G1JGT 40m SSB 59   59   John Huntingdon Cambridgeshire      
23/09/2012 12:13 M6IRP/P 40m SSB 59   59   Ian Shrewsbury      
23/09/2012 12:21 M0HEM 40m SSB 59   59   John Dagenham     Second contact- No QSL Card
23/09/2012 12:24 GB5RSR 40m SSB 59   59   Steve Preston Lancashire     Ribble Steam Railway
23/09/2012 12:31 G7JZD 40m SSB 59   59   Mike Beverley Yorkshire     No QSL Req’d
23/09/2012 12:34 GB2THR 40m SSB 57   59   Tom Newcastle      
23/09/2012 12:37 M3USW 40m SSB 53   53   Penny North Kent      
23/09/2012 12:41 G0KNM 40m SSB 59   59   Geoff Rowley Regis North Birmingham     No QSL Card
23/09/2012 12:45 G6GWR 40m SSB 59   59   John Lambourn Newbury and Swindon     No QSL Card (worked in 2011)
23/09/2012 12:54 GW0VSW 40m SSB 59   59   Carl Skewen     Send photo for PW HF Highlights
23/09/2012 12:55 M0GHQ 40m SSB 59   59   Max Christchurch      
23/09/2012 12:58 G0DOQ 40m SSB 59   59   Peter Dorchester      
23/09/2012 13:06 M6EUS 40m SSB 59   59   Sue Pullborough West Sussex      
23/09/2012 13:08 MW6GWR 40m SSB 48   57   Ricky Towas Wales      
23/09/2012 13:10 G0WGP 40m SSB 59   58   Ron North of Brighton      
23/09/2012 13:14 G0EVV 40m SSB 55   59   David 30 Miles North of Newcastle upon Tyne      
23/09/2012 13:26 G7VAK 40m SSB 57   57   Paul Crystal Palace London     No QSL Card Req’d
23/09/2012 14:02 G0BRC/P 40m SSB 58   57   Paul Sittingbourne     Bredgar and Wormshill Light Railway
23/09/2012 14:41 GW3KJW 40m SSB 59   59   Pat Pwllheli Wales     No QSL Card Req’d
23/09/2012 14:54 G0LHX 40m SSB 59   59   Harry Langport     No QSL Card Req’d
23/09/2012 14:58 G4HAP 40m SSB 59   59   Fred Wigan     No QSL Card Req’d
23/09/2012 15:01 G3PRU 40m SSB 59   59   John Norfolk      
23/09/2012 15:04 G3XIV 40m SSB 59   54   Geoff Near Southampton Hampshire      
23/09/2012 15:09 MW3VJN 40m SSB 59   59   Tristan West Wales      
23/09/2012 15:11 M0PAX 40m SSB 59   59   Graham Essex      
23/09/2012 15:15 G4RVG 40m SSB 59   59   Ian North Devon      
23/09/2012 15:18 G1GZI 40m SSB 59   59   Andre North Devon      
23/09/2012 15:19 2E0BGD 40m SSB 59   59   Brian Bath