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Radio call signs-Inverness Forest District1998
Forestry Memories
No: 3763   Contributor: Norman Davidson   Year: 1998
Radio call signs-Inverness Forest District1998

The document image is courtesy of Brian Duff, Inverness Forest District, who supplied all the first and common names for the people listed.

The document harks back to a time before today’s pocket sized mobile telephones and their extensive country wide coverage. The only way to make verbal contact was via radio systems set up by the Forestry Commission Radio branch staff who set up base stations in many main forest offices and radio transmission masts on prominent high points and hills in the countryside.

Most vehicles, large tractors and harvesting machines had a radio fitted and there were some expensive mobile hand radios available for staff who worked away from their vehicles. The full call sign usually allocated to a staff member or particular work squad consisted of a registered call sign such as ‘Queenfire’ or ‘Blackfire’ followed by a section or forest identifier usually a phonetic alphabet letter such as here ‘Alpha’ or ‘Victor’ and then a number. Hence the full call sign for David Jardine as Forest District Manager was probably ‘Queenfire Victor 1’ but latterly the ‘Queenfire’ part was only used occasionally.

The image shows the call signs for Culloden Forest District in 1998 (Substantially different from those in 1990) whose regulation call sign would have started with ‘Queenfire’. It should be remembered that everyone within signal distance with a radio, the main office and other forest areas heard every call and conversation. Brevity was a blessing!


VICTOR (Forest Management Team Members)

1 David Jardine –Forest District Manager
2 Jack Mackay -District Forester FM
3 Ken Sinclair –District Forester H&M
4 Donald MacDougall –Forest Management Torrachility area
5 Malcolm Morrison -Recreation
6 Fred Millwood -H&M North
7 Brian Duff -H&M South
8 John Maclaren -FM Inverness
9 Donsie Maclean -Foreman
10 Peter Campbell -Foreman
11 Roddy Macleod -FM Glenmore
12 Mick Canham -Wildlife & Conservation
13 Ewan Reid -FM Inverness

BRAVO (Field Staff)

1 John Aitken -Craftsman
3 Wullie Whyte -Craftsman
5 Ian MacGillivray -Ranger Inverness
6 Harry Fraser -Craftsman
7 Frank Grant -Craftsman H&M
12 Robert Mackay -Machine operator Forwarder
13Tommy Broadley -Machine operator Harvester
14 Martin MacPherson -Machine operator Forwarder
15 Bill Cameron- Machine operator Forwarder/harvester
16 Gerald Macdonald- Machine operator Forwarder
17 Ali Mackenzie -Machine operator Forwarder/harvester
18 Martin Mackenzie -Ranger Black Isle
20 Michael Hymers –Forestry Student

CHARLIE (Glenmore/Queens Area Field Staff)

2 Jim Ghillies -Forest Recreation Ranger
4 Ricky O’Donnell -Craftsman
5 Ken Haines -Craftsman
7 Donald Milton -Ranger

DELTA (Contin Area Field Staff)

1 Peter Mackay -Ranger
2 Sandy Macarthur -Ranger

Any comments and memories of the radio system and call signs very welcome.
Picture added on 05 October 2017 at 19:18
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