Phoenix Amateur Radio Club

The Phoenix Amateur Radio Club began as the Phoenix Radio Group in 2013 when 6 local radio amateurs agreed to set up a ‘club’ which would initially have the following terms of reference.

  • It was originally to be a ‘by invitation’ club.
  • There would be a co-ordinator, but no other officers, and it would run by consensus.
  • It would undertake any type of portable operation which the participants desired.
  • Meetings would be ad-hoc and mainly be held during field activities; therefore no permanent accommodation was required.
  • All communications between members would be direct by email and telephone chats and not filtered through a committee.
  • No ‘club’ equipment was needed.
  • A website would be maintained.
  • The cost of 'essential expenses' in setting up the ‘club’ would be kept to a minimum, with a voluntary personal contribution. Unused funds would be returned to members at the end of the year.
  • The group would function exclusively as ‘virtual club’.

From the earliest days all of our activities have been conceived, planned and organised in a matter of days, and sometimes hours. This has allowed the club to be ‘responsive’ and to take advantage of new ideas quickly and without the ‘dead hand of the committee’. Flexibility, adaptability and innovation, as well as high operational standards, technical knowledge and willingness to ‘do things differently’, rather than sink deeper into a rut of inertia, are our hallmarks.

Club call sign

Within a short time is was realised that there were benefits in obtaining a ‘club licence’ (M0PHX) largely because clubs call signs were very rarely heard on air and this attracted more attention than a ‘plain’ call sign. Also, it gave the Phoenix Radio Group a much clearer identity than a member’s own call sign. The members agreed that the aim was to have good conversations on interesting topics and not to operate ‘contest style’.

Similarly, although we have often used Special Event Call Signs these have not been used as ‘vanity call signs’. For most of our activities the club call sign, MX0PHX, has served us better, freeing us from the dead weight of calls form GB hunters who have no intention to ‘engage’ with what we do or how we do it. The PARC has never, and will never, make ‘rubber stamp QSOs’ except in those 'interesting' contests which we occasionally undertake.

QSL Cards

Because traditional QSL cards were becoming less popular it was decided to make designs for each activity and make these available as free downloads from the club’s website as ‘EeZee’ QSLs and Certificates. Consequently, PARC (and affiliated clubs) do not usend or receive traditional papaer QSL cards.

Youth Hostels Amateur Radio Group - YHARG

In 2013 an autonomous offshoot, the Youth Hostels Amateur Radio Group (YHARG) was set up for members who had a particular interest in finding unusual and remote places. This group was largely autonomous and had its own call sign (M0YHA), programme and members, but it collaborated closely with the Phoenix Radio Group on joint activities.

YHARG / PARC re-organisation

On 1 January 2018 YHARG became the Aries Amateur Radio Club, retaining the call sign MX0YHA.

This change reflects recent developments within the hostels movement, especially a reduction in the number of YHA (E&W) hostels and an increase in the number of independent hostels in the UK (more information on the Aries website).  The Aries ARC remains an autonomous club in all practical respects, but it collaborates with the PARC on many levels, especially on-air activities. Aries' aims and objectives will stay largely the same as for previous years, and Aries ARC will remain affiliated to the Phoenix ARC  and the YHA (E&W). Aries is based in North Yorkshire.

A list of PARC & YHARG activities since 2013 can be found here.