In Memoriam

We regret to report the deaths of the following Veterans and extend our sympathy to the families of those mentioned.

John H Cox1955
Alan W F Cushing1947
Tony J Gay1965
John Bert Jewell1938
Frederic (Fred) Kime1951
Mike G MacKenzie1958
John A McHattie1958
Terence W Pegram1955
H Geoff Smith1950
Joe Stobseth-Brown1960
John Whittaker1956

This list was correct on 18 September 2017 and supersedes the list published on 20 March 2017

We have intentionally kept this page as simple as possible and provide minimal details of the deceased.  However, where we have biographical details of a person and/or funeral details these will be published under the Notices tab above.

At the request of some Veterans we have included Given names where these are known to us.

Service Records

On 22 July the Secretary received a letter, with a Scottish stamp on the envelope, requesting information on a Mr David Smart Esplin. He is not a veteran but appears to have been a Marconi employee.

Unfortunately, the writer did not give any contact information in any form. If this person could contact us again we may be able to provide useful information.

Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society

The MVA does not normally mention CARS as they have their own web site on which all their activities are recorded.  However, their forthcoming meeting has items that will be of particular interest to To Marconi people and the note from the CARS secretary is included below:

At the next monthly meeting of the Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society three Club members will be giving short talks each of 35-40 minutes.  They are; A Century Not Out— WW1 Trench and Airborne Wireless sets, Magic Quarter Waves and Marconi’s Hidden Museum. The meeting will be held at Oaklands Museum, Moulsham Street, CM2 9AQ on Tuesday July 4th
The first talk by Brian Styles, an avid collector of all things scientific will discuss and display a one hundred year old working WW1 Mk-III ‘trench’ receiver and an aircraft 52B ‘spark’ transmitter, both initially used for military reconnaissance. There is a possible connection with the Marconi factory in Hall Street where this type of equipment was manufactured.
The second talk Magic Quarter Waves, will be by Tony Gilbey CARS President, as an aerial expert he will discuss the how and why of radio waves and the aerials of all sorts that send out the wireless signals we all use daily.
Finally, after a break for tea and coffee, CARS vice-President Murray Niman, courtesy of his international amateur radio efforts will reveal all about a real hidden gem, the Marconi Hidden Museum. Where is it hidden? You will need to come to Oaklands Museum at 7.30pm to hear the story.
All welcome. Free entry and parking. The purchase of a raffle ticket is requested. Refreshments are available.

 

Marconi Mural

We have been advised that a Marconi mural will be officially launched at Chelmsford Railway Station at:

11 am on Friday 7th July

The mural has been produced by Victoria Button & Nick Haydon.

Norman Lamont plaque

This photograph has been found by an ex Marconi Avionics/GEC Avionics employee when clearing out his late Father’s effects.  His Father also worked for the same companies.

It is believed that this refers to a building in Milton Keynes but we are asking if anyone knows the exact location of the plaque, either the building to which it was attached or where it now is as it appears it was no longer attached when this photograph was taken.

 

Titanic Exhibition

Chelmsford Civic Society are staging the touring Titanic Honour and Glory exhibition in Bond St Chelmsford, which gives a fascinating insight into this endlessly compelling story – the Titanic legend.  Visitors will discover what life was like on board with beautiful replica artefacts.

A private launch for press and media took place on Thursday 6th April when the Civic Society was delighted to welcome from the United States the TV crew from the Titanic Channel.  As you may know the SOS equipment on the Titanic and Carpathia was made at the World’s First Wireless Factory in Hall St Chelmsford and the Marconi Radio Officers on board saved 705 lives.

Our campaign is to ‘raise funds for the Industrial Heritage in our City’ Charity No. 271779

Click on the picture for a larger image

Below are pictures taken at the press launch.  These are not intended to show the full exhibition but just to give a flavour of what you might expect when you visit.

Titanic Exhibition April 2017
Titanic Exhibition April 2017
Titanic Exhibition April 2017
Titanic Exhibition April 2017
Titanic Exhibition April 2017
Titanic Exhibition April 2017

In Memoriam

We regret to report the deaths of the following Veterans and extend our sympathy to the families of those mentioned.

Arthur Raymond Batsford1956
Tom Bealin-Kelly
Derek Bennett1957
Ross Cheffers1956
A Cook1951
Roger Dixon1960
Grant Findlay2014 (Friend)
Ken Fooks1965
Alexander James Gordon1942
John Harber1946
Philip Haworth1941
Jim Hogan1960
Peter Brian Keeley1958
Fred Kime1951
Kenneth Knight1956
John Frederick Mennell1946
Royston Charles Moody1950
Jim Philbrick1961
Ralph Reid1963
Neil Schoonderwoerd1984
Andrew Sharp1966
Doug Skinner1967
Viv Smith1964
William (Jack) Southam1944
Arthur Wray1944
Miss Babs Yule1941

This list was correct on 20 March 2017 and supersedes the list published on 23 January 2017

We have intentionally kept this page as simple as possible and provide minimal details of the deceased.  However, where we have biographical details of a person and/or funeral details these will be published under the Notices tab above.

At the request of some Veterans we have included Given names where these are known to us.

Marconi Walk 2017


A SPECIAL MARCONI WALK

OF CHELMSFORD


THURSDAY 20TH APRIL @ 10:30AM

DURATION 90MINS
START AT THE JUNCTION OF HALL STREET & MILDMAY ROAD

BOOKING ESSENTIAL
PRICE £5

CONTACT ALAN OR EDITH
AT THE IDEAS HUB
MARKET SQUARE CM1 1XF

OPEN MON-SAT 10AM TO 4PM

THIS IS A SPECIAL WALKING TOUR FROM THE FIRST MARCONI FACTORY IN HALL STREET TO THE SECOND FACTORY IN NEW STREET. FINISHING BY SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT INSIDE THE MARCONI 1912 BUILDING


Price includes a donation to the Ideas Hub
Inquiries TEL 07779 931401 or 01245 609778
E-mail: cityhistorywalks@gmail.com

95 YEARS – A CELEBRATION OF RADIO STATION 2MT

Further to the announcement here on February 2 here is a report of the event from Jim Salmon and Tim Wander

The Two Emma Toc 95th Anniversary Celebrations

In 1922 from ‘a long low hut full of long low people’ – a small group of young Marconi engineers entertained radio amateurs and listeners across the UK and beyond with regular radio broadcasts every Tuesday evening. The broadcasts originated from Writtle on the outskirts of Chelmsford, Essex, and the enthusiastic team led by Captain Peter Eckersley assembled their transmitter together with a gramophone player, microphone, and on occasions a piano from the local public house, to entertain listeners.

Whilst transmissions lasted for just a year, their impact was immense. Many of those involved moved on to make major contributions to the works of Marconi and the BBC.
On February 14th 2017 a new team came together in the original Writtle Hut, safely stored and under cover at Sandford Mill to celebrate this short time in history, when a small wooden hut in a field in Writtle, occupied by a group of fascinating individuals, became the home of the UK’s first regular radio broadcasts.

Jim Salmon in the 1922 Writtle Hut with a reproduction of a broadcast transmitter of the same era in the background
Jim Salmon – ‘the power behind the “emmatoc” microphone’
Members of CARS
Chris Chapman G0IPU, Logging HF Contacts on the large laptop , with Les Radley G4JDS (middle and to Chris’ left), operating HF radio (as GB95 2MT) Right/foreground: Murray Niman G6JYB – on VHF and checking callsigns on QRZ.com using a smaller notebook pc

The team did not try to recreate station 2MT as we now live in a very different age. The aim of the evening was to recreate and celebrate the spirit and adventure of 2MT, to be ‘born in laughter and nurtured in laughter’.
From Sunday 12th February to Tuesday 14th February 2017 the team celebrated 2MT with an internet radio service including various live programmes from the original 2MT ‘Long Low Hut’. Whilst in the hut, we were joined by members of the Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society who were operating a special event amateur radio station using the call sign ‘GB95 2MT’. We were able to therefore, for the first time in 95 years actually broadcast and transmit from this historic building.

The aims of the evening were many. Firstly a great evening for the volunteers and Chelmsford amateur radio club to celebrate a true piece of Chelmsford history. The project also successfully celebrated the UK’s first regular broadcast station and raised awareness of current technology and amateur radio. We are happy to have been able to expand on the 2MT story and bring this to a new audience, paying tribute to all those involved.

Tim Wander Talking with Dave Monk on BBC Essex and 2MT

There were many high points during the broadcast including being interviewed on BBC 5 Live and BBC Essex, however the main highlight was at 7 p.m. on Tuesday 14th February, exactly 95 years on from when 2MT started transmissions. At this time we all raised a glass and drank a toast to (1) 2MT and all involved, (2) radio hams past, present and future, and (3) Captain Peter Eckersley. We were joined in the hut by amateur radio and museum friends and colleagues, and we are sure the spirits from the past were looking on…!

For further information including programme recordings, videos, photos, publicity details, and our schedule of programmes, click on the link below.
http://www.emmatoc.com

A poignant moment during the 3 days was on Tuesday afternoon when we were visited by Shirley, the daughter of Tom Eckersley, Peter’s elder brother. Now in her 80s, we enjoyed talking about family and history, and I was pleased to be able to play her a recording of an interview with Peter Eckersley, most likely from the 1950s, in which he credits his brother Tom for being the inspiration to him at school to ‘be a wireless engineer’.

The team would like to say thank you to everyone involved and in particular everyone who e-mailed us and interacted with us on social media.

The team intend to be back with you for the centenary celebrations, but I have a feeling you may hear from us before then…!

Summary

One of the advantages of internet streaming radio is that your streaming company provides figures showing exactly how many people have clicked in to listen to a radio stream and the country they are in. Of course, this is also a major disadvantage because you will know if no-one is listening ! Our streaming figures are listed below, and taking into account the nature of this short broadcast, we are very happy with the result!

For the period 11th Feb to 14th Feb 2017 :  number of unique listeners – 423     number of unique countries – 21   and  average session length – 51.9 minutes

Many thanks to you all for tuning in !

The website at www.emmatoc.com has been operating for over a year now, and the number of visitors at the beginning of February 2017 numbered 7,957. By 21st February, this count has risen to 11,482, thus an increase of more than 3,500 views on the website for the period surrounding our broadcast.

On Sunday and Tuesday the team broadcast live from the 2MT hut, Essex Ham provided a live video feed using the Periscope phone app. In all 5 videos were streamed, ranging from 5 to 16 minutes each, and these were subsequently placed on the Essex Ham Periscope page. By 21st February, the number of views for these 5 videos stands at 805.

During our 3 day event we broadcast 51 documentaries, comedies and dramas, and 15 hours of live programming, much from the 2MT hut. On Sunday and Tuesday we were joined by our colleagues from the Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society who operated the special event call sign ‘GB95 2MT’ with transmissions on the 2 Metre and 40 Metre amateur bands making contacts across Europe.  So, taking into account the above, our conclusion is – not bad for a small specialist subject radio service !

Thanks to Jim Salmon for all his hard work as the power behind the “emmatoc” microphone and for most of this report !

Further pictures are available on the CARS web site   http://g0mwt.org.uk/sandfordmill/gb952mt/