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Love is in the air...

Byline: Will Sutton

When Chuck Spence began searching the airwaves to see what he could find little did he know it would be a wife who lived just minutes away.

The Thornaby man began chatting to his now wife Amanda over his CB radio but originally had no idea she lived just a street away.

Mr Spence said: "I used to have a CB radio and I remember when Amanda and I first contacted I could tell she was close because it was a strong signal.

"I had a call sign of Horseman because I always enjoyed horse riding and she was Calypso, although I never found out what that meant.

"We spoke over the radio for a few weeks before meeting up and now we have just celebrated our China wedding anniversary."

Today the CB radio has been cast aside for a more unusual method of communication - Morse Code.

Chuck learned the skill eight years ago and is now the UK manager of IMPS, the International Morse Code Preservation Society.

He is responsible for more than 8,000 members across the globe.

Chuck is seeking new members to add to contacts ranging from Teesside to Tasmania.

He has made contacts across the world and has even had casual chats with Croatians who were under aerial bombardment from NATO at the time.

Chuck said: "With Morse Code you can talk to anyone, be they Japanese or Polish, because in Morse Code it all means the same and there is no language problem.

"The strangest conversation I ever had was with a Welsh man who said his toilet had just blown up.

"He went off the air after saying that and I never knew what happened to him."

Conversations on the radio frequencies run at around 20 words a minute.

Anyone interested in joining IMPS or learning to use Morse code should contact Mr Spence on 01642 869619.
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Publication:Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)
Date:Jun 28, 2004
Words:317
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