From: Don Beattie, G3BJ
Date: Sat, 17 Apr 2021 11:02:31 BST
I must admit that I am with Dave to an extent on this.
First of all, I strongly disagree with any argument that we should drop GB5CC because people bust the call. Really!
I have been increasingly embarrassed at the proliferation of UK “HQ” calls. Let’s look at the pattern elsewhere.
Where there are large country geographies, we sub-divide the area for both QSO “Bonus” points and HQ stations. Here in the UK we have a small geography compared to Canada, Australia, South Africa although not New Zealand (but NZ divides for bonus points). So I feel it is a moot point that we run separate HQ stations for a geography that does not sub-divide for bonus points. I also note that the pattern for HQ stations elsewhere tends often to be [Pfx] [society abbreviation] = eg vk3WIA or VE7RAC. So I have sympathy with the GxnRSGB suggestion of we still plan separate calls for each constituent country.
But there is another reason I favour fewer UK HQ stations. There is no doubt that the number of UK band slots for bonus points available (potentially 35-40) can tilt the results in favour of particular locations in the UK. This is meant to be a DX contest, but it is essential to search out all the UK HQ stations to have a chance of a good score.
So bottom line, how about:
Don’t drop GB5CC or G6HCC or whatever.
If you must stick with an HQ per UK country use G[x]3RSGB (a permissible call under Ofcom guidance 2.2 in https://www.ofcom.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0025/86173/Policy-on-temporary-call-signs-and-call-sign-enhancement.pdf ) where [x] is the regional identifier. This mirrors the pattern elsewhere.
Keep GB5CC for England instead of G3RSGB for historic reasons.
Don’t use G6XX or G3DR – the significance is lost on most entrants.
But the number of HQ calls in the UK does very little for the issues of low activity from some areas. That is where we should be focusing more effort (building on the excellent work done by Bob).
One final point – I feel that if we are to change the HQ structure in the UK, it is a global issue and I would welcome a wider consultation than the UK HF Contest forum.
Don Beattie, G3BJ / G5W
President IARU Region 1
Church Stretton SY6 6QD
+44 7802 922 219