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Radio group make waves at local lighthouse

Members of the Marlborough Amateur Radio Club, Bill Cousins Stuart Watchman, Graeme McKay and Ian Conway. Photo: Supplied.

Amateur radio fans in Marlborough have been making new connections across the world while shining a light on a famous local landmark.

Members of the Marlborough Amateur Radio Club spent the night at the base of Cape Campbell Lighthouse last weekend as part of International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend.

The team took all their ham radio gear with their them and set up in a historic cottage at the foot of the lighthouse which featured in the 2016 hit movie Light Between Oceans.

Former New Zealand Association of Radio Transmitters president Stuart Watchman from Blenheim says they were the only group to take part this year.

“Normally there would be other groups around NZ doing the same thing.

“There are about five light houses in total, many are hard to get to, but due to COVID we were the only group that participated this year.”

The annual event is held on the third full weekend in August where radio groups operate from lighthouses across the world.

“We enjoy talking to other people via radio in all sorts of ways during this weekend, direct to radio amateurs around the world using short wave. Direct meaning no internet or cell towers, wireless all the way,” Stuart says.

“It’s also fun to go to interesting places and play with radios.”

The group set up temporary aerials on the beach and contacted other amateurs in Australia, United States, New Zealand, Japan Belgium.

The Marlborough group hold a general meeting on the second Thursday of the month at EOC 4 Wither Road at 7.30pm and a social group meeting on the third Thursday of each month.

Email [email protected] for further information.

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