1928 – ‘SHORT WAVE’ TELEPHONY EXPERIMENTS
The Post Office had been experimenting for a while with ‘short wave’ for use on telephony services, when, in 1928, Archibald Gill (later to become Sir Archibald Gill) and his colleagues took over the Handley Cross farmhouse on the Rugby site to continue with the development work on telephony transmitters and directional aerials.
Gill’s team arranged for a short wave transmitter to be installed in the Annex Building, situated to the west of the main building. This transmitter was key to the first ‘short wave transatlantic telephone service’ which launched on Friday 6th July 1928.
Together with the long wave service, Rugby Radio Station now had two telephony channels to the USA. The short wave receiving station in America was at Netcong, New Jersey, and the return leg transmitter was located at Lawrenceville, New Jersey.
Within a year, a second short wave transmitter had been installed in the Annex Building. This allowed the creation of a third transatlantic service which was launched on Saturday 1st June 1929. The transmitter, housed at Handley Cross Farm, was later used for experimental services to South Africa and Australia.