The South Anglia Repeater Group (SARG) was formed in 1973 with the aim of providing a 2 metre repeater system to cover eastern Suffolk and surrounding districts. The committee was formed to represent the interests of local clubs and other amateur radio organizations (e.g. Raynet). At that time there was only one operational repeater in the UK (GB3PI). After two years of continuous pressure on both the Radio Society of Great Britain (RSGB) and the Home Office, the GB3PO repeater was licensed in 1975. Initially the license was for just one day of operation, during the Anglia Mobile Rally, and then for continuous talk-through operation in September of that year.
The repeater was originally sited at the Post Office Research Centre (later to become the BT Research Centre), at Martlesham Heath. With the two independent dipoles at 250 feet above the ground the repeater was originally set on channel R3 (145.675MHz Rx) with an output of 25 Watts. The repeater remained on this site until the late 80’s when it was moved to its current home on top of the maternity block of the Ipswich Hospital.
In 1987/8 the Ipswich UHF Group (IUHFG), who ran and maintained the Ipswich 70cm repeater (GB3IH) amalgamated with SARG. GB3IH continued to work alongside GB3PO at the Ipswich Hospital site and was replaced by a newer unit in 1994.
SARG has come a long way since those early days of amateur repeaters, now with two 145MHz, two 433MHz and one 50MHz repeaters for East Anglia as well as a D-Star node and soon to arrive DMR Repeater. The area is well served for seamless radio communication.