The Martello Tower Group
Near Clacton-on-Sea, Essex
The Point Clear Martello Tower was built in the early 1800s as defence against the French. The French never came and now the tower contains a museum dedicated to the history of the area and our amateur radio station, G0PKT is located on the roof.
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The Martello Tower Group is an amateur radio group which was originally formed in the late 1980s under the name ClackPak.
Over the years ClackPak has run an AX25 amateur radio packet radio mailbox along with a number of nodes and gateways which linked Clacton-on-Sea with Kent and central London and from there via a wormhole direct to New York (this link closed some time ago).
At the same time, ClackPak organised some successful amateur radio rallies which helped the initial funding of the two local repeaters, GB3TE and GB3CL on 145.6125MHz and 433.225MHz respectively.
In more recent times the group has set up an SSTV repeater (MB7TV), an FSTV beacon (GB3CZ) and the first licenced amateur radio to internet gateway in the UK (MB7UIV).
ClackPak was reborn in May 2009 as the Martello Tower Group with ambitious plans for other ground-breaking radio projects in the Tendring area including a 28MHz repeater.
The Martello Tower Group also compete in various RSGB amateur radio contests and the group callsign G0PKT has been active on 50MHz, 144MHz and 432MHz SSB since the reforming of the group.
In July 2015 we added a D-STAR repeater, GB7TE on 2m which replaced the old GB3TE voice repeater. GB3TE has since returned on a new frequency and from a new location.
In December 2015 we installed a 70cms DMR repeater, GB7CL at the Martello Tower.
Although affiliated to the RSGB, we are not a ‘club’ in the traditional sense. The Martello Tower where we meet is very limited in space hence we have to keep our membership numbers down.
Membership is strictly by invitation only.
In 2012 we ran a DXpedition to Herm Island (EU-114) and returned to the same location in October 2013. We are planning on heading back to Herm in the future.
Martello Tower Group, 2009-2016