Over here in G (or M or 2) land echolink nodes need to have permissions from the grown ups. So I’ve sought permission from Ofcom, with the help of the RSGB. I applied for an MB7 node, which means it is can be unattended. In order to do this I needed a minimum of 4 people who are key holders so the node can be shut down quickly. Sounds reasonable? Sounds a bit British to me. Belt and braces and some more belts just for luck.
The node will hopefully be on 2m and I have been told that if it gets granted then I could expect around 2w ERP. I don’t want to sound selfish but I have only heard 2m simplex used in this area for the local net and once in a blue moon Dent gets activated by a SOTA or WOTA chap(ess). VHF in general is scarcely used and its a shame. UKAC evenings and the normally quiet repeaters with their occasional skeds excepting mean that both 2m and 70cms are dead.
What can be done about it?
Making it appealing to use, perhaps? A bit of activity always helps.
Internet link may give some users an opportunity not only with existing amateurs but could make it appealing to those on the periphery of the hobby. Makers for example.
Anyway, let the waiting begin and we’ll see where we get to with Ofcom