RSGB Officers met with representatives of Ofcom on 12 June 2014 as part of our regular series of discussions.
The principal items were as follows:
Ofcom reported that the consultation documentation was in the final stages of preparation and publication was now due in early July 2014
RSGB reported on the difficulty of attracting youngsters into the hobby. RSGB is planning to raise the profile of this issue through a RadCom article to stimulate ideas and impetus. The RSGB expressed the hope that the Licence Review will be sufficiently permissive to facilitate this objective, recognising that Ofcom has no specific responsibility in this area.
It was noted that, overall, 73 percent of licences have been revalidated and, by the end of June, every amateur that has still to revalidate will have been contacted. Ofcom agreed that the RSGB could publish the revalidation statistics (see next month’s RadCom).
It was noted that no date had yet been set for revocation of licences that are not revalidated.
VHF Spectrum Release
Ofcom reported that consultation has now closed, noting that there had been 40 responses in total including the RSGB. Responses will be summarised on the Ofcom website and a statement published later, towards the end of the Summer.
Beacon and Repeater Applications and Clearance of NoVs
Ofcom reported that most applications had now been addressed and those that remain outstanding will be cleared by the end of the month .
Renewal of Beacon and Repeater NoVs 2014
Ofcom reported that most renewal requests had been issued. The RSGB assessed that about 21 NoVs has not been renewed and Ofcom confirmed that keepers who had not renewed will now need to re-apply for their NoVs.
Ofcom have received a new case of repeater abuse. RSGB also reported that another repeater was still experiencing problems.
RSGB reported that Chris Cummings G4BOH, Head of Intruder Watch, was retiring and arrangements were being made for his replacement.
Proposal from Poldhu Amateur Radio Club for use of “K” as optional RSL
Ofcom acknowledged receipt of original documents from the RSGB. Ofcom advised that the policy and practical implications were under consideration and that they would respond to Poldhu ARC in due course.
Outstanding Special Event Station requests
Ofcom reported that all outstanding requests from the RSGB would be cleared by the end of the weekend.
New Microwave NoVs
Ofcom reported that drafting was in hand for NoVs that would offer limited access to new frequencies at 2300-2302MHz and certain bands above 275GHz
Proposal for an upgrade to the Transatlantic Beacon GB3WGI
Ofcom confirmed that the application appeared to meet the criteria and that they would look favourably on a formal application for a NoV.
RSGB reported that action had been taken to amend the Data Protection information on the ETCC website on the advice of Ofcom.
International Space Station licence
Ofcom have made contact with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills who have responsibility for space licensing and would provide contact details to the RSGB.
Ofcom agreed in principal to the proposed changed use of the Permanent Special Event Station Callsign.
IARU draft paper for 70 MHz initiative
Ofcom agreed in principle to support.
Beacon, Gateway and Repeater Closedown Operators (CDO)
The following requirements were agreed by Ofcom.
- 4 Closedown operators including the keeper were sufficient.
- There was no requirement for CDOs to be within 30 minutes travelling time from site as long as remote control was available – next working day arrival on site was acceptable (albeit there should be some process for shutdown in an emergency)
- Anyone can be a CDO, but only a licensed amateur can repower.
Date of next meeting—2 October 2014