It was on this day, 12 months ago, that I heard of the passing of a good friend of mine, Arthur VK3FBEE.
Arthur was a member of the Scout Radio & Electronics Service Unit and always did his best. Arthur was the driving force behind the new tower at Gilwell Park. Artur and I had many long conversation about how best to improve the station at Gilwell Park, from extending the original tower, to running multiple wire antenna through the trees to getting a new tower on site.
It was Arthur unique negotiating ability that saw him get hold of one such tower. It was heading for the scrap yard and was located a hundred kilometres away but that didn’t matter to Arthur.
Single-handedly he loaded the tower on to a borrowed truck and drove it up to Gilwell Park and unloaded it beside Cleave Cole Hut. The plan was to remove the existing 19 m tower and put the 30 m tower in its place. Arthur worked long and hard with the Gilwell Park management to secure permission to erect the new tower while it just lay on the ground with weeds growing through it. Eventually permission was granted but not next to Cleave Cole Hut. Cleave Cole Hut had been condemned as it was structurally unsound.
The tower was now going up behind Storm hut, in a different part of the park. Along with others, Arthur arranged not just permission but also secured funding for the foundation and crane to erect the tower. The tower went up on 30 May 2011 but Arthur was too weak to see it having been battling cancer and in and out of hospital for months.
Arthur made one last visit to Gilwell, in the middle of June 2011, and finally got to see his hard work and effort in the air.
Unfortunately he never got to use it.