Earls Colne AOTA 2015 Report

In support of “Airfields on the Air”, a team from Essex Ham activated Airfields On The Air on Saturday the 4th of April 2015

Earls Colne Airfield was a former active RAF base between 1942 and 1946, and as such is a qualifying AOTA location for Airfields On The Air.

The team was active with the special event callsign of GB2ECA for the day. Weather conditions weren’t great – with little sign of the sun all day, and a very chilly wind blowing – we’re a hardy bunch though and we were soon on-air.

Earls Colne Airfield - April 2015
Earls Colne Airfield – April 2015

Band conditions on 40m were pretty poor, so we weren’t able to work as much inter-G as hoped, but we still managed to get a few contacts ion the log on 40m. Thanks to Steve M1ACB for being the day’s first HF contact.

We had three stations operating, an SSB station mostly on 20m with some 40m when the bands allowed, a CW station operated by Peter G0DZB (on 30m and 40m), plus a QRP 2m station.

Nick 2E0DVX operating GB2ECA from Earls  Colne 2015
Nick 2E0DVX operating GB2ECA from Earls Colne 2015
Peter G0DZB, operating CW at Earls Colne Airfield
Peter G0DZB, operating CW at Earls Colne Airfield

Our hosts for the day were Anglian Flight Centres, who now use the former RAF airfield as a flying club. Nick 2E0DVX and his other half Maj had planned to fly in from Southend (Nick holds a PPL), but the low cloudbase and poor visibility put paid to that, and they made the trip the long way around, by road.

Essex Ham operated from the same location towards the end of last year, in support of the Essex Air Ambulance. As we were operating, We saw the Essex Air Ambulance team take off on two missions – always quite a sight. The normal yellow helicopter is being serviced & upgraded, so a loan helicopter was in use by the team.

Essex Air Ambulance team taking off
Essex Air Ambulance team taking off

One of the expected treats sadly didn’t come to pass – At the Flight Centre, catering is taken care of by Norm & Deb – a burger van that does a great breakfast bacon bap – Unfortunately, Norm wasn’t on duty, due to the Easter holiday weekend, so no toasty healthy breakfast for us hams. One very unexpected treat was certainly very welcome. Maj, other half of Nick 2E0DVX, brought along some home-made yummy carrot cake – and not just standard carrot cake – but Essex Ham carrot cake!

Essex Ham's Carrot Cake - Thanks to Maj
Essex Ham’s Carrot Cake – Thanks to Maj
Pete M0PSX cutting Maj's excellent Essex Ham cake
Pete M0PSX cutting Maj’s excellent Essex Ham cake

Thanks to those who turned up to GB2ECA: Charlie M0PZT, Peter G0DZB, Nick 2E0DVX, Maj, Owen M3OIL, James 2E1GUA and John G4TQE.

Thanks also to our hosts Anglian Flight Centres, and to everyone we worked. We clocked up a couple of contacts to the US (Maine and New York), as well as Gibraltar, Monaco, Greece, Crete and several UK and European stations.

James 2E1GUA, holding a DMR repeater
James 2E1GUA, holding a DMR repeater

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4 Comments

  1. James 2e1gua 4 April 2015 Reply
  2. steve 4 April 2015 Reply
  3. 2E0NCE 8 April 2015 Reply
  4. Pete M0PSXAuthor 9 April 2015 Reply

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