The Welsh radio museum
The Gwefr Heb Wifrau - Wireless in Wales is a small radio museum with a difference. With its emphasis on the history of Broadcasting in Wales, the influence of broadcasting on our national identity and the contribution of the Welsh to the development of wireless technology this museum is unique. We have an interesting collection of old radio devices as well as educational and informative displays. The Museum is based around the collection of the late David Evan Jones and was opened just a few weeks after his death in 2008. Since then we have worked hard to add interpretative panels as well as acquiring some noteable additions to the collection.
The museum is now open every Monday from 11am until 3pm and at other times by arrangement.
During a recent visit to New York, this valve, a Radiotron UV-200 made by RCA, was purchased in a vintage radio shop for $20. It is a gas filled triode, made between August and September 1922 making it the oldest exhibit in the museum. The box is for an equivalent type made by "Cunningham" in the USA. When this type was first produced in 1920, it started the American Radio broadcasting era! The valve was used as a detector and the gas is Argon. Gas filled valves are not unknown, they have a high gain but are very non linear, hence this type was used as a detector, changing the radio wave back into audio. The valve comes complete with instructions!
Another type of gas filled valve is known as a Thyratron which is used as a high energy rectifier and controlled switch. In this case, the gas used is often Mercury vapour.
Signs of the times
New signs have recently been added to the outside of the Canolfan Iaith Clwyd building that houses the museum. The maroon/yellow colour sceme is very effective and will greatly enhance the visibility of our museum, especially when we open the doors on a regular basis. The colour scheme of the signs and, indeed, this website is based on the design of our museum booklet and internal display panels and are the work of PR Signs in Denbigh.
Our plan to refurbish the Museum to make it more attractive to visitors and to provide a wider variety of display materials is well under way. When the museum opens its doors on a regular basis there will be several areas of Interest. The exhibition room itself will have new displays explaining the background to some of the items and the technology itself. On the walls near the exhibition there will be panels showing a timeline of the development of wireless in Wales. The classroom we share with Popeth Cymraeg will have panels giving the history of the Welsh Language as well as a memorial display to the founder of the Museum David Jones who was also a founder member of Popeth Cymraeg.