HALEWOOD VISITORS CENTRE - KNOWSLEY

ASTRONOMY EVENING

FRIDAY 3 OCTOBER 2003 - 7:30 PM - 9:30 PM

Members of the Liverpool Astronomical Society, (founded in 1881), will display several telescopes for viewing the Moon, Mars and other objects in the night sky, if clear. There will also be an illustrated talk on astronomy.

This event is free, and is open to all members of the public.

For more information contact:-

Halewood Visitors Centre - 0151 448 0960

Liverpool Astronomical Society
Geoff Regan, Observatory Director - 0151 292 7165 Dave Owen, LAS Sidewalk Astronomers - 07778 454524

EVENT REPORT - HALEWOOD - FRIDAY 3 OCTOBER 2003

After a fairly sunny afternoon this looked like it could be a fairly cloud free Sidewalk event. Me and Geoff Regan loaded the 16-inch Sidewalk Dobsonian into and on to my Micra, as well as the Liverpool AS slide collection and slide projector.

We arrived at the Halewood Visitors' centre at 19:25. Two Knowsley Rangers, Darren and Karen, had already opened up the building. Fellow LAS member Jim Stacey was also there before us with his 8 inch GoTo scope. With the help of Darren, and some willing members of the public, I set up the 16 inch next to Jim Stacey's scope, about 80 yards from the front entrance. The first quarter Moon, low down in Sagittarius, was hidden by a high line of trees but Mars was very noticable and was a fine sight in the 16 inch. Unfortunately, once we had had a brief glimpse of Mars the clouds decided to hide most of the other objects we wanted to see. Luckily, Jim had had enough time to align his GoTo scope so he would be ready for any cloud gaps that came our way.

The 16-inch seemed fairly well collimated and easily showed the south polar cap on Mars. A brief gap allowed some people to see M57, the Ring Nebula in Lyra but we then had to endure a fairly lengthy spell of heavy cloud. Most of the visitors then went inside for Geoff's slide show but me and Jim waited for the next reasonably clear spell to arrive.

A Knowsley Council Media Relations Photographer took some photos of this event and some of Jim Stacey's photos can be seen below.

The Rangers brought some welcome hot coffee to while away the time and eventually, at about 21:00 a fairly extensive clear spell allowed some good views of M13, the great globular cluster in Hercules, M31, the famous nebula in Andromeda, M57, and Mars.

The total number of visitors was estimated at about 25. Together with 3 LAS members, 2 Rangers and the photographer this made a total of about 31. The next Sidewalk event will be at Otterspool in Liverpool on Fri 31 October 2003.

Dave Owen

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