My amateur radio interests are varied, though mostly on the operating rather than the construction side. Preferred mode is CW. I gained my amateur radio licence in 1968, starting out on 160 and 80. Over the years I have operated all bands 160 through 23cm, mainly focusing on the competitive side of operating – contesting and DX chasing. I have all DXCC countries worked and confirmed, and over 3,000 credited to the DXCC Challenge. I have operated from a number of DXCC entities, including: A4 C5 D6 EA6 FO FO(Australs) G GD GJ GM GU GW HB HB0 HC8 HS KH6 KL7 LA LX LY OH OJ0 PJ2 PJ4 PY SM SV SV9 T32 TF UA3 V5 VP9 W XT YL ZC4 ZL7 ZS ZS9 3B7 3B9 3X 4U1ITU 5U 9A 9G 9H 9K 9M6 and 9M0(Spratly). These included participation in major DXpeditions ZS9Z/V51Z, T32C, TX6G, ZL7G, 3B7C, 3B9C, 9M0C and D68C plus small, holiday operations and a number of single- and multi-op contest expeditions. Voodoo contest operations include 9G5AA XT2DX 5U5Z, 3X5A and 9K2HN. I have also been on IOTA expeditions (Les Minquiers, Farne Islands, St.Kilda, Flannan Is.) and have entered the IOTA contest (of which I was manager for 12 years) from GU and OJ0 as well as from home. I hold the short contest call M3D. In the autumn (Fall) of 2017, I operated the CQWW Phone contest in the Multi-Two category as PJ4Q with several friends, including Steve PJ4DX/G4JVG, and the CQWW CW contest from HS0ZAR, again in the Multi-Two category. In January 2018 a group of us put on a one-week operation as ZC4A. In November 2018 I was one of the team members at A44A for CQWW CW. In November 2019 I used my Gambian call C56DF to enter the CQWW CW 40m single-band (unassisted, high power) category.
I operated as GR3XTT from 29 April to 9 May 2011, in celebration of the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton (now the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge) and again (briefly) in May 2018 for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, as GQ3XTT (HM Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee) and GO3XTT (London Olympics) in 2012. I also operated in July 2013 as GV3XTT to celebrate the RSGB Centenary. If you need a GO3XTT, GQ3XTT, GR3XTT or GV3XTT QSL, you can send direct or via the bureau, or email a request to me as I am not bothered about receiving cards for these one-off callsigns. Indeed, the best way to request a QSL is via G7VJR’s excellent Club Log.
I am currently QSL manager for the following: C56DF G3XTT (and all portable xx/G3XTT operations) GJ3ULT/P GO3XTT GQ3XTT GR3XTT GV3XTT HB9XIS HB0XIS MJ0C (CQWW Phone 2001) MU0C (CQWW Phone 2002) 9G5AA (March 2002) 9G5FD and 9H3DF. Cards may be sent via the RSGB QSL bureau, direct or requested via Club Log (generally preferred as I do not actively collect cards nowadays, particularly for my portable operations).
A past member of the RSGB Board & Management Committee, past-Chairman of the RSGB Contests Committee, member of ARRL, current President of CDXC (UK DX Foundation – formerly the Chiltern DX Club), UK Six Metre Group, FOC, Reading & District Amateur Radio Club. HF columnist for RadCom (RSGB members’ magazine) for 15 years and, for several years, CDXC Digest. Previously a columnist for Amateur Radio and Ham Radio Today magazines. Author of two amateur radio books – the RSGB Operating Manual and the 6 Metre Handbook (republished in an updated version in 2013 as the 6m and 4m Handbook). I was also a referee at WRTC 2006 in Brazil, a judge at WRTC 2010 in Russia and as a judge at WRTC2014 in New England. I have served on the secretariat of IARU conferences in Cavtat (Croatia) and Vienna.
My current station is an IC-7300 driving an Expert 2K-FA as the main equipment. Antennas vary from time to time – I have various monoband antennas that I put up according to what expedition I am chasing or what contest I am entering. I also have an FT-847 for 4m (and other VHF) operation and an Elecraft K line (K3, KPA500, P3), mainly for expedition use.
Last but by no means least, on 1 October 2013 I took over as editor of Practical Wireless magazine, a role that I enjoy very much.