Download a PDF copy of the invitation letter for your club here
We are contacting Amateur Radio Clubs, Organisations, and individuals in the South West of England to invite you to consider joining the Wessex Ham Project.
Why Wessex Ham?
Over the last twenty years, the way that people connect with each other, get information, shop, and access their leisure pursuits has changed almost beyond recognition. Two of the main drivers for this are, firstly, the growth of the internet and social media, and secondly, growing pressures on people’s time as our work and family life patterns change.
In the past, Amateur Radio clubs followed the social norms by providing access through clubs; we hired halls, provided talks, and formed highly structured committees to run things. If you wanted to be part of the Amateur Radio community, there was very little alternative to joining the local club.
Today all of that has changed. We use Google, YouTube, and online networks. We shop on Amazon rather than the High Street. Instead of waiting for the next club meeting, we get our information and connectivity online. The pandemic has accelerated this trend, but only to underline its direction.
Take the ‘maker’ community for example. Many of these groups play with computers, Raspberry Pi, Arduinos, even low power ISM transmitters and receivers. These groups ought to be a fertile recruitment ground for amateur radio, but access to their activities is completely different. They inhabit blogs, on-line groups, and meet irregularly – usually as ad-hoc groups working on whatever intrigues them. They are not interested in an antiquated and closed group limited by geographical constraints that is only available once or week or possibly once a month.
Access to Amateur Radio needs to adapt and change to reflect this. So we are setting up Wessex Ham to offer a new kind of connectivity with our hobby. It doesn’t replace clubs – who often have the expertise and resources people need. It aims to strengthen them by creating a network of access, available online 24/7. The phrase ‘Clubs as Hubs’ sums it up.
We’d like to invite you to join us.
It’s admittedly an experiment. We are putting energy and funding into the project. But the outcome depends entirely on the interactions and energy that we all contribute.
All you need to do is (a) agree as a club that this is something you’d like to be part of, and (b) nominate someone to be the link between Wessex Ham and your club or organisation. It’s completely free to join.
There’s a lot more information on the Wessex Ham website, and on our growing Facebook page.
With every good wish,
On behalf of the Wessex Ham Working Group