MORSE CODE !

A snippet

What a crackpot idea?  Obviously not a naval officer & certainly not a naval staff officer.

10th June 1942

I, like thousands of my peers, learned the Morse code when a boy in the cubs and scouts without a disciplined application.  I joined the navy as a boy of 15 and in my first year at HMS Ganges honed the necessary applied skills of reception, every now and again, being allowed to practice sending Morse code under professional observation. As the year progressed, the art of sending started to match receiving in terms of time spent in the Morse training classrooms, but at the end of my training and leaving to join my first ship nearly sixteen months later, there was a marked difference in speed of ability and level of expertise. We were trained to receive automatic Morse code using a pencil and piece of paper @ 20wpm with 90% accuracy with a mild form of interference added in, and 25wpm using a standard issue Imperial typewriter continuously fed by roll of paper, the type also used in a teleprinter, again at 90% accuracy.  However, our passing out grade at sending Morse code by hand was 18 wmp at 85% accuracy.  I can never remember it being a difficult skill to acquire, certainly not one that warranted the use of 'words' as suggested by the Staff Officer author above. Like so many advocators of such vital practical skills, I wonder whether he ever actually transmitted or received a signal in anger himself. There was a huge difference between training to receive Morse code transmitted from an automatic machine [perfect Morse], and that sent on a busy circuit with many ships all sending and receiving by non-automatic means, when Morse went from excellent [speed and readability] to appalling, requiring many re-transmissions.