Club callsigns are issued to AR clubs or groups of amateurs. The callsigns are often distinctive and/or historic.
Club stations are invariably issued with Advanced callsigns.
The question arises – do you have to hold an Advanced licence to operate a club station?
The ACMA amateur information paper, published on its website says:
Two special conditions are attached to club stations:
‘This Amateur station is a club station and must be operated in accordance with the Radiocommunications Licence Conditions (Amateur Licence) Determination 2015 that equates to the qualifications held by the operator of the station.’
‘The licensee of a club station shall keep a log book in which must be entered:
- chronological record of all transmissions;
- the frequency and type of emission used;
- the station(s) communicated with; and
- the name and callsign of the qualified person operating the station.’
It then goes on to say:
Clubs, schools, colleges, institutes, and similar organisations may apply for a licence to establish an amateur station. The organisation must nominate a qualified person who will be responsible for the supervision, operation and control of the station.
Because it allows flexibility of operation, a club station is issued an advanced amateur licence. However, the club station must operate at the level of the qualified operator [of] the station (my emphasis).
If you are qualified at a level less than an advanced amateur, your club station must only be operated at your level. For example, you are qualified as a standard amateur, your club station must be operated as a standard amateur station.
Special conditions are attached to licences that authorise the operation of a club station in the amateur bands (see above).
A reasonable person would interpret this as permitting a club station to be operated by a Standard or a FL licensee, provided they observe the band/power/mode conditions of their own licence – i.e. a FL holder can operate a club station if they only use FL bands, modes and 10W.
If they wish to use bands and modes available to Advanced licence holders, then there must be an Advanced licence holder present.