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Sunday, March 01, 2015
* Theme- 00:00
"Birthday Serenade"- Willi Glahe
* Opening Announcement- 00:15
Welcome to "Wavescan", international DX program from Adventist World Radio
Researched and written in Indianapolis, produced in studios of shortwave WRMI
1. The BBC Far Eastern Relay Station - 1: The Original BBC Relay Station in Singapore
2. HFCC Report Muscat Oman: Discussion Jeff White WRMI & Jerry Plummer WWCR
3. Japan DX Report
4. SQOTW30 Special QSL of the Week: World's Shortest Reception Report
* The BBC Far Eastern Relay Station - 1 - 01:03
The Original BBC Relay Station in Singapore
The current BBC Far Eastern Relay Station in Singapore traces its earliest origins back to the year 1937. It was on March 1 of that year, that a new studio and transmitter facility was officially opened at Caldecott Hill on Thomson Road, on the edge of suburban Singapore city.
This new international radio broadcasting station contained five transmitters; four low power shortwave transmitters each rated at just 500 watts, and a 2 kW mediumwave transmitter that had previously been on the air on 1333 kHz at a downtown location, a government building in Empress Place, Singapore. These five transmitters now on the air at Caldecott Hill were as follows:-
4 Transmitters ½ kW SW Callsigns ZHO ZHP ZHN
1 2 MW 1333 kHz ZHL
Most of the programming for this new radio station was produced locally in the adjoining new studio building on Caldecott Hill. However, live off air programming on shortwave from the BBC London via the two 80 kW transmitters at Daventry (Senders 4 & 5) was also inserted into the daily scheduling of Radio Malaya Singapore. It was intended that the Caldecott location was only temporary as far as the transmitters were concerned, and work began at Jurong on the south coast towards the western edge of Singapore island for a more permanent transmitter facility.
At this same time (1937) as the British colonial authorities in Singapore were developing their new radio broadcasting station on Caldecott Hill, the BBC in London was making plans to establish a relay station in Singapore, their very first overseas relay station. Then, as warlike conditions were emerging in Europe, the BBC attempted to actually purchase the new radio station in Singapore.
Soon after war broke out on continental Europe, a new 100 kW Marconi transmitter was despatched by ship for Singapore. However, this ship was torpedoed and sunk, and its electronic cargo was lost.
As a replacement, the BBC obtained a 50 kW RCA shortwave transmitter from the United States and this was despatched to Singapore by ship for installation at the new station already under construction at Jurong. A simple antenna system had already been installed.
However, before work was completed on the entire facility, the transmitter was hurriedly removed due to the outbreak of war in the Pacific. It was then shipped to Barbados in the Caribbean where it was installed at the C&W Cable and Wireless communication station at Bearded Hall, under the callsign VPO.
The entire facility at Caldecott Hill was taken over by the Japanese administration and it was reactivated as Shonan Radio; their first broadcast was on March 27, 1942. In addition, the Japanese constructed a new transmitter station on an adjoining property at Jurong, and they installed four shortwave transmitters at 7½kW each.
Three of these transmitters were new units, and a fourth was taken from Penang Island where it had been on the air previously under the British as ZHJ. The final broadcast as Shonan Radio took place three years later on February 3, 1945.
Soon afterwards, the studio suite on Caldecott Hill and the two side by side transmitter stations at Jurong were taken over by the returned British administration. The original Radio Malaya transmitter site was developed for use by the Royal Air Force, and the new former Japanese transmitter site was taken over for use by four different radio organizations:-
C&W Cable & Wireless
BMA British Military Administration
SEAC South East Asia Command Singapore
BFEBS British Far East Broadcasting Service
Even though all four organizations were each using the same facilities, the three broadcasting organizations, BMA, SEAC & BFEBS, each issued their own separate QSL cards. Initially though, left over stock of the pre-war Radio Malaya card with its Malayan sunset scene was in use.
On June 30, 1946, the SEAC services ended; BMA became Radio Malaya, and BFEBS became a BBC relay station with off air programming from the BBC London. The identification announcement for the BBC relays was given as the Voice of Britain.
In January 1946, work began on the installation of four Marconi shortwave transmitters, 10 kW units Model No. SWB11. These transmitters came from India, and it is presumed that they were left over units no longer needed for the Forces Service in Delhi.
The first unit was activated on January 19, (1946) and the second on February 4. All four were in use by November in the following year (1947). The BBC officially took over the Jurong station on August 8, 1948. At this stage, three of the recently installed transmitters were now listed at just 7½kW, and one at 5½kW.
In order to increase the coverage from the Jurong transmitter station, the BBC announced that they planned to install a Marconi 100 kW transmitter at this location. However, due to the development of an international airport nearby, this projected facility had to be cancelled; the tall antenna towers would become an obstruction to aircraft.
At this stage, the BBC began to look for another suitable location, which they ultimately found on the nearby Malay peninsula, and thus work began on a huge new station in the rubber plantation areas near the bottom tip of the peninsula.
In April 1949, the BBC closed out its usage of the Jurong transmitter base on Singapore Island, and their Far Eastern Service was transferred temporarily to the SEAC shortwave station at Ekala north of Colombo in Sri Lanka.
The QSL cards verifying the shortwave transmissions from the BBC Far Eastern Relay Station reflect the changes that took place in that era. Initially, BFEBS QSL cards quite clearly verified the reception of the station. After the BBC takeover, appreciation was expressed to the listener for the report, though, as was stated on the card, they could no longer officially QSL reception reports from listeners.
Thus in summary, the story of the BBC Singapore in this early period of radio history is as follows:-
* 1937-1942 Radio Malaya Caldecott Hill 4 @ ½kW Program relays
* 1937-1939 BBC Jurong 1 @ 100 Projected shortwave station
* 1945- 1947 BFEBS Jurong 4 @ 7½Ex Japanese station
* 1945-1949 BBC Jurong 1 @ 100 Projected shortwave station
* 1948-1949 BBC Jurong 4 @ 7½ Official BBC relay station
When we take up the continuing story of the BBC Far Eastern Relay Station next time here again in Wavescan, we plan to present the information regarding their temporary usage of the SEAC shortwave station in Ceylon.
* Program Announcement - 06:35
* HFCC Report Muscat Oman - 09:27
Discussion: Jerry Plummer WWCR & Jeff White WRMI
* Japan DX Report - 17:10
* SQOTW30 Special QSL of the Week: World's Shortest Reception Report - 22:48
On Monday January 21, 1946, I was in the home of Ern Suffolk who lived a half hour bicycle ride from my home in a small country town in South Australia. Ern was a prominent international radio monitor who had assembled a large collection of QSL cards in those days, and in subsequent time, he was the DX editor for Radio Australia.
On that auspicious summer day, I was tuning his elaborate shortwave receiver, and I heard the familiar sign off routine from the Voice of America, loud and clear. In mentioning this item of shortwave reception, I asked Ern, in my teenage naivity, should I send a reception report. He stated: Well, you can only try. I asked where should I send the report, and he suggested I try both locations, VOA in Hawaii and VOA-OWI in San Francisco.
I did indeed send to both locations a reception report on this brief ½minute transmission from VOA Honolulu, in the hopes that at least one of these addresses would respond with a QSL card. Imagine my surprise when, in due course, I received two QSL cards, each of which was postmarked, Honolulu and San Francisco, on the same date, March 5. 1946
The Honolulu QSL card shows a brief typed QSL text, listing the date, January 21,1946, and the frequency 6120 kHz. The card shows an artistic representation of the Pacific Ocean, and the station identification The VOA Voice of America KRHO Honolulu TH, Territory of Hawaii, in large red and blue ink.
The California QSL card was their regular QSL card with the large red white and blue
areas, or blocks. However, the large white panel that usually shows a callsign in large letters is left blank, and a typewriter in blue ink shows the callsign KRHO and the frequency 6120 kHz. Also typed onto this card is the time of reception, 1000-1000½GMT.
Unique is the fact that such a short reception report, just half a minute, was verified with two QSL cards from different locations, and the fact that both were postmarked at their vastly separated locations on the same date. By the way, we do not recommend that you send such short reception reports.
* Music of the World - 25:36
Traditional Arabic music, drums & male group vocal
* Closing Announcement - 26:00
Thanks for listening to "Wavescan", international DX program from Adventist World Radio
Researched and written in Indianapolis
1. French Radio in the South Pacific: The Radio Scene in New Caledonia - 3
2. HFCC Report Muscat Oman
3. Philippine DX Report
4. Special QSL of the Week SQOTW31: First QSL Received
Several QSL cards available. Send your AWR & KSDA reception reports for Wavescan to the AWR address in Indianapolis; and also to the station your radio is tuned to: WRMI or WWCR or KVOH, or to the AWR relay stations that carry Wavescan. Remember too, you can send a reception report to each of the DX reporters when their segment is on the air here in Wavescan: Japan, Bangladesh, Philippines, Australia & India. They will verify with their own colorful QSL card. Return postage and an address label are always appreciated.
No Call Location Land IRM kHz (k)W Year Date Significance QSL NWS ——————————————————————————————————————————————————
001 7LA LauncestonTasmania AMP 1100 .1 1961 Nov 6 Emergency transmitter C 282
002 RA Kabul Afghanistan AMP 96.1 .01 1971 Jul 4 Experimental FM C 284
003 VOA PoroPhilippines AMP 15000 LP 1984 Feb 19 Malfunctioning exciter L 286
004 TTY Perth Australia AMP 1130 .2 1966 Jun 24 6NM transmitter to 6ED DIYC 287
005 ICPA KabulAfghanistan AMP 102.8 ½ 1972 Aug 27 Hotel Intercontinental DIYC 289
006 KSFO Frisco California AMP 560 5 1989 Oct 18 Temporary after earthquake C 290
007 RM HavanaCuba AMP 9600 100 1982 Feb 3 Relay Radio Tashkent C 291 008 NILB Central Pacific PH 10800 LP 1968 Dec 23 Apollo Recovery, 1,000 SW L 292
009 AWR Ekala Sri Lanka CG 11800 100 1981 Feb 21 Test broadcasts Africa & ME C 293
010 PJC Willemstad Curacao PH 8694 1 1969 Jan 9 Morse loop C 294
011 AFRTS Adana Turkey AMP 1590 .01 1980 Mar 24 Plane, WL in ft DIYC 295
012 AWR Sines Portugal TD 9670 250 1977 Aug 26 Self-designed AWR card C 296
013 VoM Honhor Mongolia CL 12085 250 2012 Sep 14 Lived in Ulaan Baatar L&C 297
014 CRI Beijing China UQ 21660 2005 Sep 19 Firedrake jammer C 298
015 RM Russia AMP 11875 1984 May 2 Russian jammer, BBC ARS? C 299
016 NBC Pt Moresby New Guinea VL 4890 35 2006 Mar 18 Reduced power C 300
017 RM Murmansk Russia JB 5930 5 1979 Jan 13 Long wait DIYC & L 301 018 RM P'zavodsk Russia JB 5065 5 1979 Jan 21 Long wait DIYC & L 302
019 VLU2 Christmas Is Indian O. AMP 1420 .5 1977 Aug 23 Tried many locations DIYC & L 303 020 XMX Christmas Is Indian O. AMP 341 .1 1977 Aug 28 Airplane reception DIYC 304 021 AIR Pt Blair Andamans JJ 1440 1 1992 Nov 12 Emergency transmission L 305 022 ABC Shepparton Australia TA 6080 100 2011 Feb 4 Emergency transmission C 306 023 ORTB Benin CO SW 1985 Sep 20 Hard to hear, difficult to QSL C 307 024 WQTC Bryan USA-OH AMP 1520 .5 1986 Jul 17 Two words, Bryan Radio DIYC 308
025 AIR Bangalore India MKP 9690 500 2014 Feb 28 Memory of 1st radio broadcast C 309 026 CHU Ottawa Canada BW 3330 3 2010 Sep 16 Low power TSW C&L 310
027 SW 11 Sites Asia TA 2 SW 2014 Jun 5 IRDR Trial Broadcasts C 311
028 TMR Rogaland Norway TD 6210 1970 Jul 8 Jamming against RNI P 312
029 NBC Pt Moresby New Guinea JJ 3925 10 1976 Oct 25 1st report from India C 313 030 VOA Honolulu Hawaii AMP 6120 100 1946 Jan 21 ½minute report 2C 314
031CBX Edmonton Canada WP 740 50 1974 Dec 18 1st QSL C 315