As the evening heads into the early hours for our intimate observing sessions, with capacity reduced to just 10 people, it will feel as if you have the whole Observatory to yourself.
These nights correspond to there being no Moon visible in the sky, which means that we will have a sky that is as dark as it can be. The reason that this is good, is that when the Moon is visible, it reflects light and illuminates the sky, which then causes the faintest of stars to become obscured.
On arrival, your health and safety is our primary concern, and we have a comprehensive system in place to ensure that you have a wonderful, and safe, time with us. We have also specifically reduced attendee numbers, to assist us in our efforts to keep you safe.
The event will begin with a personal welcome from our astronomer, Gary Fildes. Gary is a very experienced science communicator and astronomer, and founder of the Kielder Observatory, where he was Director and CEO for over 11 years.
After the welcome, Gary and the team will escort you into our new state of the art classroom, which has a cosy feel, and high definition (HD) projection system. Gary will take you on a whistle stop tour of the Universe. Following this, we will split into groups and, weather depending, start observing the sky, with our array of telescopes and cameras.
On these evenings, the Observatory will turn its eyes to the skies and hunts out some of the treasures of our Milky Way galaxy, such as Nebulae – glowing clouds of gas and star clusters, which dazzle like diamonds strewn on the velvet sky. We’ll also look to observe new stars forming, and older ones dying off, with the effects that are felt here on earth.