north eastern school of wireless telegraphy

Founded in 1911 to train Radio Officers for the Merchant Marine affectionally known as ‘Sparks’.

During that time, thousands of men (and a small number of women) were trained as Radio Officers in Britain and Ireland and sailed under the Red Ensign. Many of them were trained by the NESWT

      The main source of emergency assistance in the oceans has always been the nearest deep-sea ship to your own.   Radio Officers kept watch on the international distress frequency in order to render assistance to ships in trouble.   When their own ship was in distress, they stayed at the morse key until assistance was at hand, (and not infrequently went down with their ship).

      The Radio Officer not only operated the radio equipment, but also repaired and maintained it. The companies that built and supplied the electronic equipment (and in many cases supplied the skilled Radio Officers to the shipping companies), also had their own technical staff based at various seaports.
NEWST was originally based in Bridlington on the Yorkshire Coast but during the Second World War was moved to Otley for safety reasons and then returned to Bridlington Post war for the remainder of its existence.

contact for information regarding this site. There is a newsletter page  for any stories, memories etc. These can be emailed to me at the above email address or posted to Tony Cooper, 9 Fortyfoot, Bridlington, YO16 7SA

Radio Officers Association is a very useful site for contacting a wider community of ex R/O,s

There is a book published by the Association called “The Long Silence Falls” The life and times of the Merchant Navy Radio Officer 1900-2000.

Also a Book Published by one of our ex students.

The book is called CQ GTZM, Diary of a Maritime Radio Officer by Ross Bradshaw and can be obtained from Practical Wireless Magazine. Cost £16 95