UK 5 MHz band – disappointing RSGB 5 MHz Working Group member’s statement

I will leave you to decide your own personal opinion of the first message shown below, which was posted recently on the UK 5 MHz Yahoo Group seeking a response (and help) from an RSGB 5 MHz representative in relation to complaints of serious interference QRM from the UK now being caused to Radio Amateurs operating on their fixed channels in EI.

Compare and contrast with the second following message from someone else who has consistantly tried to help all 5 MHz users and who is considerate of those from outside the UK too. This is how it should be done.

My own personal opinion is that after reading message 1, I find it extremely disappointing at best, and doesn’t represent my views. The original EI Radio Amateur’s complaint was completely ignored in this response.

If it is correct as quoted that the RSGB “have no current plans for a UK (5 MHz) band plan” , then the next best option is to view the ’60m Whiteboard’ where others are trying to promote useful ideas and avoid unnecessary QRM, for the benefit of all.

Whilst not ‘official’ and not a ‘band plan’ the ’60m Whiteboard’ is a much better place to start than the chaos and anarchy that will happen if a ‘free for all’ is allowed to happen here in the UK, with considerable potential for frequency and mode clashes unless some form of up to date guidance is provided. The author of Message 3 shares my views on this matter.

Message 1

— On Mon, 7/1/13, e-mail g3leq <g3leq@…> wrote:

From: e-mail g3leq <g3leq@…> Subject: [ukfivemegs] Re: Re EI frequencies and channel “FB” To: “mike holden” <mholden88@…> Cc: Date: Monday, 7 January, 2013, 21:38

Hello Mike
It cheered me up to see your sensible contribution to this otherwise ridiculous thread  concerning band plans for 5MHz.  The RSGB and IARU currently have no plans for a UK band plan to cover our new 5MHz sub-bands.  Indeed such a suggested plan within the UK would be unworkable because numerous countries currently limit their amateurs to specified spot frequencies wthin the 5250 to 5450kHz range.  How SAD are the contributors who spent Christmas Day churning out their observations – have they no families?  The Ministry of Defence have commented that UK radio amateurs on 5MHz should now be content with what they have been given on 5MHz – at least until after WRC15.  The UK MoD and NATO currently use the frequencies that are being protected. If anyone wants to dream about a 5MHz band plan then I suggest that they also dream about a contiguous band allocation.  When, and if, that comes about – then I imagine we shall be prevailed upon to use narrow bandwith modes down the lower frequency end, and voice SSB higher up.  In the meantime I suggest that the so-called “white board” is wiped clean and we all get on with some on the air operating.
Gordon L Adams G3LEQ – RSGB 5MHz Working Group
Message 2

From G3PLX:
The “new set of 5MHz allocations” that we have now are quite unlike the ‘ordinary’ amateur bands and rather different from the set of channels that we had up to a few days ago, and they have quite simply taken us all by surprise. It is not at all clear how we can make the best use of these fragmentary bits of spectrum, and it is also evident that there ARE real and potential problems in operating within the new allocations.
It does seem to many of us that if we should try to “think about the best way forward”, then 5MHz will be a better place than if we don’t. Even if one supposes that if we do nothing, the chaos will somehow sort itself out in the end, it IS worth trying to speed-up the process by identifying and considering possible solutions in parallel with evolution.
Above I put the phrases “new set of 5MHz allocations” and “think about the best way forward” into quotes. Why?
Because I can reasonably replace the phrase “new set of 5MHz allocations” with the single word “band” and the phrase “think about the best way forward” by the single word “plan”.
Regardless of the differences between our ideas, surely we can agree that it would be a good idea to “think about the best way forward” for the “new set of 5MHz allocations”?
73 Peter

Message 3

I’m very definitely with G3PLX; if anyone can come up with a coherent argument for having no “rules” whatsoever then I will reconsider that position, but at the moment I cannot see how a free – for – all (which is what it would turn out to be) could benefit anyone.
I read G3LEQ’s posting last night with mounting disbelief; it seemed to almost go out of its way to be gratuitously offensive about those who are doing their best to arrive at some sort of coordinated approach to the usage of the available 5 MHZ spectrum, and those who support them. Rereading the posting this morning gives me no reason to modify that view. Quite apart from anything else the message quoted in that posting (which as far as I can see did not appear on this Group) would point towards a measure of planning being preferable to none at all if conflict between UK allocations and those available elsewhere (e.g. EI) is to be avoided. In signing off his posting G3LEQ included the words “RSGB 5MHz Working Group”; was the posting made in the name of the WG, thus representing the collective view of the WG or was it personal opinion? The transition from a tightly regulated spectrum allocation and usage to one where the requirements were rather less demanding in the short timescale that was available could have been predicted to be tricky, but it appears that this may not have been spotted by the RSGB or the 5 MHz WG; perhaps that oversight is at least partially responsible for the friction that is now painfully evident. Remember the old adage that failing to plan is the same as planning to fail.
A different posting made reference to “the traditions of _REAL_ amateur / ham radio”; I would be interested to know exactly those traditions are or were, because I strongly suspect that getting a consensus on that might be difficult to achieve. Apart from anything else if “traditions” were rigidly observed there wouldn’t be a 5 MHz allocation to argue about in the first place.
Chris / G8GFB

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