To promote and explore the hobby of amateur radio. Providing quality training for all amateurs and in all aspect of the hobby.
Sun, 21/02/2016 - 19:00 -- andyripley

Yes we can roll out loads of excuses.
"There's no-one on VHF SSB any more" which is partly true after all licencees were granted access to HF, but no real reason to leave it out altogether. Some new rigs are able to do VHF and UHF multimode, and it's something you could do - right?
"It not really as much of a challenge is it?" Well it's a different one. Instead of blasting as much RF into the air with an indeterminate bit of wire as can be on HF, you've more of a barrier to point it in the right direction and of course develop the different operating skills that VHF demands rather than HF.
VHF antennas, even 6m, can be relatively small and make your bad location for VHF less of a problem, you can go portable. A modest portable station can be fitted into a car and set up on site in a few minutes. Yes that can be a bit of a challenge of a dark freezing night and even the odd snow shower or thick fog. However there's a buzz in getting your first contact and then finding out he's in France!
You don't need to have a fat wallet either. My 2m SSB rig has had it's thirtieth birthday years ago and still works, likewise the linear, and they still turn up at rallies for less than silly prices even if they need a little TLC. I'd bought it, and well it might as well get used rather than gather dust. It's even been used on SOTA. My son M3ZAZ likes my FT290R - it's simple and does what it says on the front panel.
UKAC. It does get the club name out there, it gets us on the scoreboard and shows we're a club that just doesn't moan about how it used to be in the past. That's why this contest was invented, it's regular and it gets bits of bands active. It encourages newly licenced operators to explore these modes, some may like it some not but at least they've had a chance. Of course this may become a bug that bites them and they keep having a bash at.
It's firmly embedded in my diary now, Tuesday night is early tea and head for the hill for two hours (don't do the full 2.5hrs as it's a bit much, got 95% of contacts in first 1.5hrs usually). Just as long as the portable lamp stays working and also the laptop battery for logging. Unlike HF contesting, you need good ears to find that station down in Kent sometimes rather than just bawling with QRO.
Yes we do encourage local rivalry, but that just adds more operators to the mix, and after all if they work where I normally operate from it's in the next square and so that's a multiplier. I've even operated on holiday, although I'm eyeing a spot over on the coast that should be interesting, with a takeoff towards GM-land as well as south.
Does this encourage you to at least have a try, even if it's just the 6m one? Might we put in an entry for VHF Field Day in 2016?