In the late 1990s the Amateur radio club split into ‘Surge’ who wanted to run a music-and-chat broadcast station, and ‘SOWN’ (Southampton Open Wireless Network) who built an 802.11 mesh network across Southampton. Eventually student house-moves and increased 2.4Ghz-noise meant the mesh network no longer had enough coverage to be worth the effort.
In 2007 the SOWN project was revived (with some funding from ECS), to extend the campus wireless network into students’ homes, often via the now-ubiquitous ADSL connections. This was largely a software development exercise.
In 2011 a group of students became interested in reviving the University’s Amateur activities. Sufficient details were available for Ofcom to re-issue the G3KMI call sign to the newly-reformed group.