In 1922 the U.K. Government issued the first licence to a British broadcast station. The new station’s callsign was “2MT”, transmitting from a WW1 Army hut in Writtle. The first broadcast was made on 14th February 1922 by a team of Marconi engineers led by Captain Peter Eckersley. The broadcasts from Writtle were a great success and paved the way for the formation of the B.B.C later that same year.
(Please note, the programme could be subject-to-change due to COVID and/or weather-conditions.)
Saturday 21st May 2022
Dave Monk from BBC Essex will open the weekend celebrations at 10.30am in the Christian Centre. The Centre will house an exhibition depicting Marconi’s achievements and the role of the radio broadcasts from ‘The Marconi Hut’ in Lawford Lane under its call sign of 2MT. In the Small Hall there will be power point presentations and sound recordings. During the day there will also be ‘pop up’ talks and hands on radio equipment demonstrations given by members of the Chelmsford Science and Engineering Society and others.
In the Village Hall there will be a display of paintings related to the 1920’s by the Writtle Art Group, and Writtle Portrait Group, plus work from the Junior school’s earlier projects. The Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society (CARS) will set up again the Special Event Station that was run in February. There will also be refreshments available kindly provided by the Women’s Institute.
On Writtle Green the Institute of Digital Archaeology from Oxford University will be bringing their Marconi Van exhibition - a unique multimedia, interactive exhibition, housed inside a 1968 Morris Minor Traveller. There will be other scientific activities to keep the children amused with the help of the Scouts and Guides, plus an ice cream van and burger van. It is also planned to have some Vintage 1920’s cars on show.
The Writtle Wireless Walk will take about 90 minutes starting at The Rose and Crown during the afternoon. It will be a circular guided tour of the village highlighting its many connections to those early days of wireless broadcasting and the Marconi Company. It will feature the stories behind both the buildings and people that were involved in making 2MT Writtle the first radio entertainment station to regularly broadcast 100 years ago. An event that would change our world and the way that we communicate forever.
Booking is essential as numbers will be limited. The price is £5 per person (Children under 12 half price) and includes a donation to a local charity. Bookings can be made by calling Alan Pamphilon on 07779 931401
In All Saints Church the Marconi / Platt window can be seen throughout the weekend with photos of its dedication in 1992.
Sunday May 22nd 2022
A Service of Celebration conducted by the Bishop of Bradwell in the presence of the Lord Lieutenant and the High Sheriff will take place at All Saints Church at 10.00am in the presence of other civic dignitaries. All are welcome.
Christian Centre Activities on Sunday will be concentrated on the exhibition starting at 12.00. In the small hall there will be power point presentations and sound recordings, and a further Writtle Wireless Walk starting from the Rose and Crown in the afternoon.
All Saints Church and the Christian Centre will remain open until 16.30 and refreshments will be available in the Church.
Over the weekend the special limited edition 2MT Centenary book signed and numbered by its author, historian and lecturer, Tim Wander will be available, containing 208 pages in full colour at a cost of £10. Copies can be ordered in advance for collection on the day or posted via website 2mtwrittle100.co.uk which will "go live" soon. The book will be launched and can also be collected on the evening of the 17th May lecture (see above). It will not be available through bookshops or on Amazon.
Also on sale will be a special edition of Wilkins Marmalade, and Chelmsford Brew Co. based in Great Baddow has a special edition of the "2MT Radio Wave" Beer.
D S Eagle, family butchers, 9 Wellfields, will also be selling their jams and chutney with a special 2MT label.
An exhibition programme will be available for purchase on the day.
Writtle Green will be restricted to traffic but additional car parking will be available at Brewhouse Hoppit (adjacent to the Co-op in Bridge Street) or on the Eastern Campus of Writtle College University off Lordship Road.