An opportunity has arisen in the form of the Bath-based Advanced learning course run by Steve Hartley G0FUW, I have already emailed Steve and he has send me the form to send off to him to enrol on the course, with a refundable (if passed) £40 deposit to secure a place.
I want to pass the full examination before the syllabus changes, with this course I have to arrange my own examination at an exam centre of my choosing, naturally this would be the Colburn (Hudswell) club though I may have to go to Bishop Auckland or Ripon depending on situation at the time.
I have read the book already however will need to re-read it again and possibly the Foundation and Intermediate books just to keep me up to speed on the earlier and lower tiers of licence.
I have a few incentives to go for the full apart from the sense of satisfaction I will get from doing so, as I want to run a self-contained APRS receive only igate from my home QTH and under my current licence I must be at home to run it, initially using a Raspberry Pi and an RTL-SDR with a battery and solar charging, and NoVs for this can only be done on a full licence, mainly to fill-in for MB7USD as that does not seem to be working all the time and thus those that use APRS in the area may not be able to get into the APRS-IS. I also want to be able to help others to get into the hobby and with my intermediate I am very limited in what I can do in that regard. Another thing I would like to do is run special events stations which I could not otherwise do without a full licence, again to help promote the hobby.
The other thing I'd be able to do is run up to 400 watts on most bands (the UK limit without an NoV is 400 watts), and most modern rigs are capable of up to 100 watts on HF (sometimes a bit more depending on the radio) though power is not everything as successful contacts can be made on some bands with as little as a few watts sometimes milliwatts under good conditions.
And finally I will then be able to operate in other countries and also /MM (maritime mobile), the latter with permission of course, though the likelihood I'll operate /MM is low.
My journey to the full licence should hopefully start soon and in a few months I hope to have achieved what I set out to do, I will keep you all posted on how things are going.
73 de 2E0EIJ