Special Contest Call Sign

Contesting multi-operatorMake an application for a special contest call sign by downloading and completing the form on this page.

Please read the Ofcom guidance below before starting your application.

Policy and procedure

1. The holder of a UK Amateur Radio Full Licence or Full (Club) Licence may apply for a Special Contest Call sign (“SCC”). This call sign may only be used in amateur radio contests of no more than 48 hours duration, run with the aim of contacting as many other stations as possible in a given period of time and run by an amateur radio club, national or international amateur radio association or another organisation (including amateur radio publications), generally accepted within the amateur radio hobby (locally, nationally or internationally) as being a bona fide contest organiser.

2. The call sign will be in the format ‘G’ or ‘M’, followed by a chosen digit and a chosen suffix letter. Examples are G8Z or M7R. We have made 520 call signs available, (G)(#)(&)(A-Z) and (M)(#)(&)(A-Z), where ‘#’ is an applicable Regional Secondary Locator (if any) and ‘&’ is a digit from 0 to 9.

3. Although variations are granted by Ofcom, the RSGB administers and distributes SCCs for us. Please apply on the following form giving three choices of call signs, in order of preference. The RSGB publishes a list (http://www.rsgbcc.org/hf/information/scc.shtml) of SCCs, which is a guide to availability. Applications take up to four weeks to be processed.

Qualifying criteria

4. The qualifying criteria are divided into two parts, – one for contest participation and the other for your achievement in the contest. Both parts of the criteria must be met in order for a SCC to be granted.

Participation criteria
4.1. Individual licensees (or the licence-holder in the case of club licensees) must supply evidence of having entered at least five contests from the list in Table 1 within the last five years. Ofcom will also consider results from other contests, not listed in Table 1. In those cases, Ofcom will assess the suitability of the contest for the purposes of issuing an SCC. If you are requesting a variation to an individual licence (as opposed to a Full (Club) licence), you must have entered all of the contests as a single operator. If you are applying on behalf of a club, the contests may have been entered as a single operator or as a multi-operator team.

Achievement criteria
4.2. The applicant must have accrued five achievement points from the contests entered. One point is accrued if the licensee (or licence-holder) makes at least one fifth (20%) of the number of contacts of the leader. Two points are accrued if the licensee (or licence-holder) makes at least one half (50%) of the number of contacts of the leader. Note: If a UK call sign is used to enter a contest, ‘leader’ means the leading station in the UK in terms of the number of contacts made in the section entered (if applicable). If a non-UK call sign is used to enter a contest, ‘leader’ means the overall leading station in the contest in terms of the number of contacts made in the section entered (if applicable).

Table 1: List of qualification contests
CQ WW 160m CWCQ WW 160m SSBIARU HF Championship
WAE DX SSBRSGB IOTA (July)RSGB Commonwealth Contest
RSGB 1st 1.8MHzRSGB 2nd 1.8MHzRSGB DX
RSGB 50MHz Trophy (June)RSGB 144MHz Trophy (Sept)144MHz Marconi Memorial
RSGB March 144MHz/432MHz (counts as one contest)RSGB May 432MHz – 248GHz (counts as one contest)RSGB 432MHz – 248GHz (Oct) (counts as one contest)

5. If the Licence revalidation date falls due during the term of the SCC variation, the variation may be withdrawn if the licensee fails to revalidate the Licence. This is covered by Clause 6(3) of the Licence.

6. The RSGB administers and distributes SCCs and also advises Ofcom on applications. However, the RSGB’s advice is only a recommendation and the final decision is Ofcom’s. Although the RSGB administers applications on our behalf, therefore, the variation to the licence is granted by Ofcom.

7. Any variation that we grant will be valid until 31st December 2024, unless, before then, the licensee surrenders the licence or asks for the variation to be cancelled or Ofcom revokes the licence or cancels the variation.

8. When your variation expires, you may request a fresh variation for the following five-year period, keeping the same call sign, if you still qualify (see ‘Qualifying criteria’, above). You must apply between 1st January and 31st December of the year of expiry. If a fresh application is not received, the call sign will be withdrawn for a period of 2 years before it is made available again.

9. You may ask the RSGB Contest Support Committee to remind you about your renewal, using the following address csc.chair@rsgb.org.uk. While the RSGB has offered this facility, please note that it remains your responsibility to reapply, even if you do not receive a reminder.


Download the Ofcom application form from the link below.

The form is in Microsoft Word format, you can complete on-screen and then save and email, or print out on paper and post.

If you are posting the form, please print out on one side of the paper only and send it unfolded in an A4 envelope.

Details of where to send the form are on the form itself.

Data protection

By sending the RSGB your application form you consent to RSGB collecting and storing your data from this application form solely for the purpose of issuing and administering the Special Contest Call Sign scheme and sharing this data with Ofcom if requested to do so.