About the Club

The club was founded as the Kingsway Technical College Amateur Radio Club in 1970 by Derek Coupar (GM3YVX) and Findlay Baxter (GM3VEY), who started running classes for the Radio Amateur Examination at the college in October 1969. The club's callsign GM4AAF was first on the air in 1971.

Kingsway Technical College became Dundee College in 1985 then Dundee and Angus College in 2013; the club's meetings are still hosted by the college on the Kingsway Campus.

As the college is closed during the summer we have a more informal meeting then at Monikie in the local Scouts and Guides Hall. We regularly assist the Scouts and Guides in obtaining their communications badge and Jamboree on the Air (JOTA). We also use the hall for taking part in contests and special event stations and normally have an annual Radio Fun Day where we will set up a station and members along with their partners and friends can come along and see what we do, whilst our president Ally, MM0DRA, shows off his culinary skills on the barbecue.

James Bowman Lindsay

The club's emblem — a bronze hand grasping a thunderbolt — is based upon the monument to James Bowman Lindsay in Dundee's Western Cemetery.

Born in 1799 near Arbroath, Lindsay was a pioneer in the field of electrical engineering, developing and demonstrating an early electrical lighting system in Dundee in 1835. He later turned his attention to telegraphy, proposing a scheme for constructing and protecting transatlantic telegraph cables in 1845. In 1854 he was awarded a patent for a method of wireless communication across bodies of water, which he demonstrated across the Earl Grey Docks in Dundee, and later across the Tay from Dundee to Woodhaven. Members of the club have attempted to replicate Lindsay's experiments on several occasions — with varying degrees of success!

DARC members at Victoria Dock

DARC members attempt to communicate across Victoria Dock using Lindsay's techniques in May 2007. (Photo by MM0DXD; used with permission.)

In addition to electricity, Lindsay's research interests included philology, astronomy, philosophy and history; he spent much of his life working on a dictionary in fifty languages, and was granted a pension of £100 per year by Queen Victoria in 1858 in recognition of his great learning and extraordinary attainments.

For more about the life of James Bowman Lindsay, see A History of Wireless Telegraphy by J. J. Fahie.