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For Radio Amateurs in and around Somerset UK
Initial proposal.  Date yet to be agreed

COVID-19
Planning is about to resume
Invitations have been sent on 7th June
via the region 11 groups io network
to all Clubs interested in supporting the proposal
and helping with the planning.
If you would like further information,
please email us directly.

Conference Introduction

New ways of connecting

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Conference Invitation Area

 

Amateur Radio is in decline across the UK.

Reducing numbers, an ageing population, technological advance, and less activity are all contributing to a reduction in both the profile and the perceived relevance of the hobby.

With few exceptions, the structures that have traditionally sustained the hobby are no longer fit for purpose. Without swift evolutionary change it is inevitable that a number of the region’s clubs will increasingly struggle, leading to further reduction in access to the hobby, reinforcing decline and the potential loss of bandwidth. In rural communities with low population and isolation, the problem is even greater.

We can reverse the decline.

We believe that in a climate emergency, with expanding globalisation, and increasing pressure on local government resourses, Amateur Radio Communication is more relevant than ever, and we have both the skills and the technology to reverse the decline. But we need fresh strategic thinking.

Within the Amateur community there is resilience, technical knowledge, and the energy to put in place new structures that can create better connectivity and expand both the relevance and scope of our hobby.  However, we need to do this ourselves. No one will do it for us.

So we are proposing a day conference at the end of May or beginning of June, located in central Somerset, for Radio Amateurs in the Somerset area to begin to identify new ways of connecting with everyone interested in wireless communication of all types, and to develop a new strategy for for Amateur Radio in the area. 

The conference is being organised jointly by the MidSomerset ARC and the RSGB Region 11 team.  It will not be simply a ‘talking shop’. We plan practical outcomes that will transform the way we engage together with wireless communication. We seek nothing less than transforming the structures that connect Amateurs and those interested in wireless communication.

At the very least, we want to achieve:

    1. Increased numbers entering the hobby
    2. Increased on-air activity
    3. A stronger social network of like-minded enthusiasts
    4. A solid and consistent training/assessment/exam offer at a variety of established locations throughout the Region
    5. Regional events supported by a larger active community

But we aim for much more than this.

We want to explore ways of strengthening existing clubs so they can become strategic 'hubs' in a much wider network, supporting each other and individual Amateurs, and to explore ways of creating new communities of interest.

This is an initial call to ask if you or your club would like to participate in this conference.  In order to judge the amount of interest, and therefore the level of resources to commit, we are writing to all Clubs in the area inviting expressions of interest. You can download a copy of our letters below. With a small subsidy from the RSGB, we aim to keep conference costs to a minimum.

We invite you to discuss this proposal with other Club members and other Amateurs in the area, both online and on air, and let us know the answers to these questions:

    1. Would you or your Club be willing to participate?
    2. Roughly how many members would like to join the process?
    3. What would be the level of cost per person you could reasonably commit to the conference?
    4. If you wish, we would additionally welcome your or your club’s thoughts on the process we are proposing

If there is sufficient support, we will invite new thinking and call for papers to get us started.

Please respond by 30th March by registering your interest below.

Register your Interest

You can respond as an Individual, or on behalf of your Club

If you have any questions, you can contact us at 'conference@wessexham.co.uk' .

We welcome any comments or suggestions at the early stage.  All these will be fed into our discussions.

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