January 1, 2014
I was recently given a couple of issues of “Practical Wireless” from 1959. More synchronicity then ensued. The very next day I entered a charity shop and the first thing I saw was a humungous heap of “Practical Wireless” magazines from a couple of years ago. I purchased one random issue for the sum of 20p. Reading the editorial I saw that they were lamenting that their magazine, and a number of other minority-interest subjects were no longer to be stocked by W.H.Smith newsagents. The editor was rightly concerned that although subscriptions were available and the magazine would continue, they would now lose many sales from casual readers who picked up an issue from time to time.
I was one of those casual readers for a time in the 1970s when DXing and sending off for a self-assembly Sinclair matchbox-sized radio seemed like a good idea. In 1959 “Practical Wireless” was full of adverts of do-it-yourself kits. Radios, TVs, HiFis, even self assembly Tape Recorders! Or bizarre stuff like this monstrosity to convert your 78rpm Record Player into a Tape Recorder !!!