A BRIEF HISTORY OF NEWPORT AMATEUR RADIO SOCIETY. by Ross GW3NWS
The original Newport Radio Society was probably founded in 1913. This society met at Stelvio on Bassaleg Road Newport, the then home of Captain C H Bailey who held the very early call sign BHX.
Documentary evidence of this can be found in Wireless World Volume II. No 13. April 1914, page 48.
This fact probably makes the Newport Wireless Society the oldest in Wales if not the UK! Since then Stelvio has had a very chequered history indeed and as a grade 2 listed building it was illegally demolished by a property developer.
In 1975 I received a phone call from Leason Goucott (GW3YTJ) asking me if I would be interested in reforming the Newport Amateur Radio Society (NARS) and, as a result of that telephone call the Newport Amateur radio society was reborn and in late 1975 the club took up residence at Brynglas House. Brynglas house proved to be a most excellent QTH and the club flourished, eventually installing a 60 ft tower with 4 element beam and various wire aerials on the roof.
In 2013 the club was given the devastating news that, due to government cutbacks, Brynglas was to close. 35 years in this wonderful old house with its great facilities had come to an end.
During our time at Brynglas the club was very active and it organised many mini dxpeditions to Welsh and Scottish islands, entered many contests from there and through its comprehensive programme of Amateur Radio courses helped many, many budding amateurs to obtain a transmitting license. For many years the Newport Amateur Radio society was present at many public events where it demonstrated Amateur radio to thousands of onlookers. The club adopted the principle of primarily teaching radio theory in greater depth than was necessary to just pass the radio amateurs exam. These exams were in great demand and at its peak the club had more than 120 members.
In October 2013 the club moved to to the St Julians community library, Newport where we held meetings until the end of 2022. Due to changes being made at the library we moved to our current QTH in the Tabernacle Congregational Chapel, Rhiwderinmeet and meet Thursday evenings from 7pm.
C.H.Bailey BHX, is not C.H.Bailey of The Tyne Engineering Works who died in 1907, but one of his sons, Capt. Charles H. Bailey, who was interested in wireless and operated from Stelvio, and died in a train crash in France 1935.
More details can be heard from historian Paul Busby and Writer and Broadcaster Goff Morgan in their Little Knowledge Podcast HERE.
Derby Wireless club has a copy of the first ‘callbook’ and BHX can be seen there.