Petersville rebroadcast facility

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Petersville rebroadcast facility
Part of CFB Gagetown
CFB Gagetown Petersville tower 2002.JPG
Petersville rebroadcast facility in 2002
Built 1973
The Petersville rebroadcast facility is a radio rebroadcast station opened in 1973 to serve the CFB Gagetown training area. It replaced the manned rebroadcast site at Knowlton Hill in 1973.

NB Tel Article - April 1973

The following article about the new facility near Petersville, leased from NB Tel appeared in the April 1973 issue of NB Tel News (Vol. 2 No. 4).

NBTel has played a key role in updating communications within the Canadian Armed Forces.
An automatic rebroadcast facility leased from the telephone Gompany provides full communications control over the 428 square miles of Canadian Forces Base Gagetown. It was activated last month by Brigidier [sic] General S. V. Radley-Walters.
Located southwest of Petersville, the new repeater replaces a manned station which has been in operation continuously for the past two years. That station had required 24 hours per day, seven days a week supervision.
The first phone patch telephone call was made through the new facility by BGen. Radley-Walters during a ceremony at the site. Those in attendance included Major John Dicker, Commanding Officer 3 Signal Squadron: Captain Dave Pettigrew, Operation Officer, 724 Communication Squadron and officials from NBTel.
"These leased facilities," said BGen. Radley-Walters, "appear to be a winner. It will mean a tremendous saving in manpower. Three Signal Squadron will now be able to concentrate on new training and operational priorities."
When a maneuver is planned, personnel at the Range Control Office in base camp must warn the airport, the department of Natural Resources and military flying organizations. This is a safety procedure designed to minimize the possibility of non-exercise personnel and aircraft from entering a live fire zone.
At the repeater site a building has been constructed to keep the weather out and the curious safely away from the high voltages generated by the equipment.
This equipment is activated by anyone in the Gagetown training area using a military radio tuned to either the two standard frequencies. The signal is then automatically retransmitted on the other frequency and sent down a 21-mile remote control telephone line to the Range Control Office.
Two additional features have also been incorporated into this new system.
All messages are taped automatically and kept for a specific time period. This procedure will prove invaluable should a serious accident ever occur in the area.
The second feature is the radio/telephone patch system which allows any user in the area to talk directly to any telephone local on the base. The reverse is also possible.
Since the early sixties when positive control of the Gagetown training area became periodically necessary, personnel of 3 Signal Squadron have established such a link with normal military radios.
When the Combat Arms School moved to Gagetown over two years ago, it became necessary to establish a permanent operating station. It was located initially in a vehicle and then in a small drafty cabin.
"The activation of leased facilities brought to a close a favorite retreat for some," said a spokesman from the base, "where a cup of coffee and a sympathetic ear were always at hand and confidences were never violated."
To ensure that the manned station will be remembered in years to come, historical data about the station. its operations and the people who operated and maintained it, is being gathered.
Equipment at the new repeater was installed and designed by NBTel. D. J. Crawford, Supervisor - Mobile Sales with the company's Special Services Group, was in charge of the sales and engineering of the system.
New rebroadcast equipment installed by NBTel for the Canadian Armed Forces in the Petersville area of Camp Gagetown is shown being checked by D.J. Crawford, Supervisor - Mobile Sales; Major john Dicker and Captain Dave Pettigrew. The rebroadcast facility is used for safety purposes.