Paul M. Hawkins, UK


this is a mail, that I received in the end of July, 2018...:


Hello Rainer,

Please excuse this cold call, but I am trying to spread the word about a book I have written called “Point to Point – A History of International Telecommunications During the Radio Years”. The book is available from online retailers such as Amazon but I also have a small stock of books which I am selling for £9.00 (plus p&p £2 in the UK) and will sign if required.

Your website would seem to be an ideal place to notify people about the history of Utility HF Radio Stations and I would appreciate it if you could show one or more of the attached files.

A bit of background – I was a technician working for the BPO in the 1970’s in the international service and worked at Dorchester HF transmitting station, Bearley HF receiving station and also Goonhilly satellite station. Many of the voice mirror files, as you call them, are familiar to me and in fact I have several recordings I am willing to pass to you for the website. Although many were recorded using my Ham radio equipment, I have some which were recorded using the official traffic receivers and so are better quality. I also have a large collection of photographs.

Anyway I hope the book and the other information is of interest and I look forward to hearing from you.

Many thanks and 73’s,

Paul M Hawkins



Book Title
“Point to Point - A History of International Radio Telecommunications during the Radio Years”. ISBN 9781787196278 – Paperback, 284 Pages. Published by New Generation Publishing in December 2017.

Paul Michael Hawkins MIET

Price & Availability
Available for online purchase from Amazon at £10.99, also Waterstones and WH Smith.
Signed copies available from the author, email:

About the Book
In the whirlwind of the modern digital electronic revolution the days of analogue electronics, when international telecommunications was conducted in the absence of satellites or fibre optic cables, are often forgotten if not un-imagined. Yet for a substantial part of the 20th century this was the case, and the global telephone and telegraph services were carried through the medium of long-wave and short-wave radio.
“Point to Point” is about the part radio played in the development of the international telecommunications network during the 20th century. It tells the story, following the initial work of Marconi, of how radio technology developed from crude beginnings, into a reasonably sophisticated network, successfully competing against the cable network but ultimately succumbing to advances in satellite communications. Radio telecommunications commenced with electrical spark technology and evolved into valve based technology with some fairly complex designs later in the 1920’s and 30’s. Semi-conductors came late in the day for point to point radio but were introduced into equipment designs in the 1960’s.
The book covers the growth of radio in the 1920’s and 30’s and the introduction of long distance telephone, how the radio stations coped with WW2. The book also has some social history talking about the skills employed, working conditions for staff and their wages. The penultimate chapter is autobiographical with the author describing his life and training as an apprentice at Dorchester radio station and then later as a technician at Goonhilly satellite station in Cornwall and a shortwave receiving station near Stratford upon Avon in Warwickshire.
These radio systems were operated with minimal automation and a high degree of human intervention, managing and overcoming the limitations and difficulties of long distance radio propagation. The relative efficiency of point to point radio and the cost of replacement satellite installations resulted in radio playing a part in international telecommunications up to the 1980’s, giving the author direct experience of this fascinating medium.
The book is not restricted to the activities of any one company or organisation. It is about the overall system and covers activities of a number of organisations including the Marconi Co. the British Post Office, Cable & Wireless, and various overseas organisations, including Bell/AT&T and RCA in the USA.

The story is presented in 14 Chapters, 5 appendices, including an extensive bibliography, and an index.
Chapter Page
Foreword 3
1 Introduction 9
2 Long Wave Wireless Telegraphy 13
3 The Discovery of Short Waves 37
4 Development of the Short Wave Beam System 45
5 Radio Telephony - The Transatlantic Telephone 67
6 Development of Short Wave Radio Telephone 83
7 The Growth of Radio Telecommunications in the 1930s 93
8 Radio Telecommunications During World War Two 123
9 Post War Growth and Standardisation 1945 – 1960 143
10 Regulation, Business and Politics 161
11 New Technologies and New Threats 1957 – 1969 179
12 The Decline 195
13 Personal Experiences 207
14 Epilogue 239
A Record of Services Operated 245
B The UK Point to Point Radio Stations 259
C HF Point to Point Radio, System Diagrams 263
D Radio Telephone and Telegraph Modulation Systems 265
E Bibliography - List of Reference Books and Papers. 269
Index 279

Research and material for this book has included:
Investigations into documents and materials held in various archives.
Access to numerous professional journals, books and publications, all listed in a comprehensive bibliography.
Anecdotal information acquired from personnel employed by the GPO and C&W.
The direct experience of the author during his employment with the GPO and his knowledge of radio communications.

Author Biography
Paul has spent his whole career working in radio communications. He joined the British Post Office International Telecommunication service in 1967 working at Dorchester Radio Station, then Goonhilly Satellite Station and finally Bearley HF receiving station. From 1980-83 he worked as an RF design engineer in the USA. Between 1983 and 2013 Paul worked for the Thales Company in England, where as a Technical Specialist, he led the design of antennas and communication systems for Submarines, Ships and Land Mobile Vehicles. Paul retired from full time employment in 2014.
Radio and its history is a personal interest of Paul and he has published a number of articles in the vintage wireless press, a booklet and two conference papers for the IEE. He has also given lectures to various groups about radio telecommunications history, the most notable of these being at the IEE ‘100 Years of Wireless’ conference in 1995. In 2015 he gave a lecture on the subject of “Marconi Beam Wireless Stations” at a conference in Bologna Italy, in the presence of Princess Elettra Marconi, the daughter of Guglielmo Marconi.