Directorate of Telecommunications
POLICE SERVICE; West Midlands
This section contains a collection of scanned photographs relating to West Midlands Police.
Last Analogue Transmissions
In accordance with the national Public Safety TETRA rollout programme, existing Police analogue radio systems that were originally installed and maintained by DTELS are being switched off after users have migrated to the new digital network.
Normally, the switch-off goes unnoticed, but in this case DTELS.Org is indebted to Martin Swift for sending in this short audio recording of the last transmission made on West Midlands Police Channel 2 VHF analogue radio system, Callsign Yankee Mike (YM), on Friday 3rd March 2006. In addition, there is a recording of Channel 1 switch-off, which includes a short period of pip-tone as a nostalgic reminder to all engineers who used to work on these schemes
Martin has sent in the following text to accompany this audio recording:
“Warren, who’s Callsign is Alpha 34, is a Vivista engineer working in the West Midlands Police area, transmitting from their Integrated Communication Control System (ICCS) at Bournville EQR. I was in my car at Romsley, the last station on the Radio Link Assembly (RLA) Quasi-Synchronous (QS) scheme to be switched off was at Sedgley Beacon, which is the one you hear - Marconi RC7000/RC792.
Recorded by Warren's colleague, Steve Powell, in Stourbridge. YM analogue VHF is now gone - but was not just switched off !!
This ends my 30-year association with the West Midlands Police analogue radio systems.”
Amateur Radio Event Station (Sedgley Beacon)
Before the last West Midlands Police VHF hilltop site was decommissioned permission was obtained to change its frequencies and put the site back on the air on the amateur 2m band for the last time. A quick notification about the forthcoming activity was placed on the VMARS and VHF AM email reflectors. Four of the engineers who had been involved in the installation, commissioning and maintenance of the WMP radio schemes. Steve, G8PYT, Warren, G0TQN, Paul G8YLB and myself G4NCE. We then spent the evening of 21 September 2006 giving AM a final airing from the site on 144.550MHz. And, totally unexpectedly, we had a pile-up of AM (and some FM) stations on the frequency.
Over the two hour period some 29 contacts were made from as far afield as Oldham and Weston-super-Mare using our individual callsigns /P, running 120W from the ex-Ch5 Marconi RC7000 to a dual turnstile antenna 48m AGL and the RC792 receiver connected to the slot panels at 42m. Some of the stations contacted were using ex-police RC690s, which seemed very fitting. After an excellent two hours I then had the sad task of switching off analogue radio equipment at a West Midlands Police radio site for the very last time - the end of their analogue radio era…
Acknowledgements: Photos, Martin Swift Also, input from Keith Hughes.