Zello "network radio channels" are moderated, require approval, generally follow amateur radio procedure. Even used for training! It's another way to whet the appetite for unlicensed but interested people.
Hardware? Just use your phone! Specific "radio style" devices available too.
Huge variety of things on zello, including maritime. Live demo of zello using the Southern Irish repeater group was successful, using an old castoff android phone.
There is a Cheltenham Amateur Radio group 😁