Cherry Ripe (numbers station)

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Cherry Ripe was the nickname of a powerful shortwave numbers station that used several bars from the English folk song "Cherry Ripe" as an interval signal. The station was believed to be operated by the British Secret Intelligence Service and to have emanated from Australia. It was thought to have previously broadcast from Guam. It consisted of an electronically synthesised English-accented female voice reading groups of five numbers, e.g. "3-5-7-6-1". It is likely that the station was used to communicate messages to undercover agents operating in other countries, to be decoded using a one-time pad.

Cherry Ripe had a more famous and much more active Middle-Eastern cousin, the Lincolnshire Poacher, which also used several bars from the English folk song of the same name as its interval signal.[1] The Lincolnshire Poacher had long been suspected as being operated by Britain and had been detected as emanating from RAF Akrotiri on Cyprus. Apart from the interval signal, the format and voice of the two stations was identical, though as of July 2008 the Lincolnshire Poacher appears to no longer be active. In September 2009, Cherry Ripe moved their transmitter to Humpty Doo, Australia. [2] In December 2009 Cherry Ripe also went off the air.[3]

Schedule[edit]

This schedule was accurate as of January 2006. All times are UTC, frequencies MHz.[2]

Sunday–Friday
00:00 18.864
21.866
01:00 19.884
21.866
10:00 20.474
23.461
11:00 18.864
23.461
14.730
12:00 18.864
23.461
13:00 18.864
21.866
14:00 18.864
20.707
22:00 18.864
24.644
23:00 18.864
21.866

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Spy Number Station Profile". Spynumbers.com. Retrieved 2016-08-17. 
  2. ^ a b "E3 Lincolnshire Poacher". Simonmason.karoo.net. 1988-12-21. Retrieved 2016-08-17. 
  3. ^ "NSNL 147 - Voice stations". Cvni.net. Retrieved 2016-08-17. 

External links[edit]