Latest, local astronomy news…

Next meeting:

Thursday October 10th

Members night –
Practical advice on observing and imaging the night sky 

at JHO, Moor Park

Message from our Secretary, Graham McLoughlin

As some of you will be aware, the February PADAS meeting was the last at St Gregory’s Catholic Social Club, as the Club is no longer going to be open on Thursday nights. PADAS would like to thank St Gregory’s for their support and hospitality. The PADAS Committee are looking for another suitable meeting venue, but as a temporary measure PADAS will be holding our monthly meetings at the Jeremiah Horrocks Observatory, Moor Park, Preston 7.30pm on the second Thursday of the Month. The next meeting takes place on Thursday 14th March. This will be PADAS’ first formal meeting at the JHO since 2003. We have purchased extra folding Chairs so all members will be accommodated comfortably. There are refreshment & toilet facilities and disability access at the Observatory.

The down side is parking access, as there is limited parking at JHO, so only members bringing equipment should drive up to the observatory. Vehicle access is via locked barrier at Moor Park Avenue by the Lodge House, just off Garstang Road. Members who have difficulty walking or require disabled access can drive down to JHO but please contact a committee member beforehand. The nearest and easiest parking is on the South bound side of the A6, Garstang Road. There is also limited parking on Moor Park Avenue.

On a positive note after the monthly meeting if clear we can observe with the PADAS telescopes.

Also, the final public observing evening of the season will take place on Thursday 21st March at the JHO, so come along for a chance to see the night sky through a telescope – clouds permitting of course!

Come along to our public observing sessions at the Jeremiah Horrocks Observatory on Moor Park. Every 3rd Thursday of the month throughout the winter, starting on 20th Sept. Hoping for clear skies to enable viewing through large and small telescopes. See you there!

Public Observing Nights Flyer

Note that the next PADAS meeting is on Thursday 14th June at 7:30pm. Very appropriately our Hon Vice President Dr. Keith Robinson will present a talk on Summertime Astronomy, which will be followed by the Society’s Annual General Meeting.  Hope to see you all there:)

Next meeting on Thursday 10th May will have Mike Armstrong talking about the early days of Radio Astronomy at Jodrell Bank – see you there!

Come along to our next meeting on Thursday 8th Feb where Prof Ian Robson will tell us about the discovery of the Cosmic Background Radiation (CRB).

The PADAS October meeting on the 12th has Prof Lionel Wilson explaining how large scale eruptions on the Moon aid our understanding of the Earth. Come along and meet the PADAS gang!

Next meeting is on Thursday 13th July and guest speaker Stephen Halliwell, a local Preston historian, he will be taking about Moses Holden, a Preston astronomer who gave public lectures on astronomy – a modern day Brian Cox.

Next meeting is on Thursday 8th June which will include a talk by PADAS Hon Vice President Dr Keith Robinson followed by the AGM. As usual, 7:30pm start at St Gregory’s social centre Blackpool Road Preston – here.

Next meeting…Thursday 13th April 7.30pm at St Gregory’s social centre Blackpool Road Preston. Our Speaker is PADAS Chairman John Hooper and he will be talking about the Messier and his catalogue of deep sky objects.

Thank you Dermot Gerthings for an excellent presentation and talk on your experiences being the UK’s ambassador for the Apollo 17 Goodwill Moon Rock. More details can be found here.

Next month, on Thursday 13th April, Graham McLoughlin will take us through the highlights of his research into the 1927 Total Solar Eclipse which was viewed from the Jeremiah Horrocks Observatory in Preston, but not by Graham…or so he claims:)

The next meeting is on Thursday 9th March and Dermot Gethings will let us about his involvement in the Apollo 17 mission…



On Thursday 13th October Professor Lionel Wilson will describe unusual volcanic features on the Moon.

After a long summer break PADAS meetings start again on Thursday 8th September with a talk by Mike Armstrong on Solar Eclipses.


Recent events included:

Look smart! Don’t forget to let Dermot know if you wish to purchase a PADAS Polo Shirt.


Don’t miss the transit of the planet Mercury across the face of the Sun on Monday 9th May. Public event in Haslam Park, Ashton on Ribble. The transit starts at approx. 12:10 and ends at approx. 19:30. Safe solar viewing equipment will be available to see this rare event. Observing starts at 11:30.

Haslam Park viewing location is here. As usual, ‘X’ marks the spot.

Haslam Park Mercury site

Next meeting of PADAS, Thursday 12th May – bring your ‘scope for help and advice on how to get the most from observing in and around the Preston area. Gain invaluable advice from the experienced observing and imaging teams.


Come along to the next PADAS meeting on Thursday 11th February. Professor Ian Robson will explain Super Cool Astronomy and how we explore the cold depths of the Universe.

Some photos from the PADAS Christmas Dinner have been added to our Facebook page  – go here to see them!

Peter Sloan Presentation - resize

Presentation to Peter Sloan by Dr Allan Chapman for over 30 years service to PADAS

Re-scheduled! Visit the PADAS stand at Stargazing In the City on Wednesday 13th January 2016 at 6-9pm. Unfortunately tickets for the event are SOLD OUT, but check this link for details. See the wonder of Preston’s skies though a range of telescopes, clouds permitting!

Don’t forget the PADAS Christmas Dinner and Dr Allan Chapman lecture on Thursday, December 17th.

Get tickets for the UCLan JHI Winter Lecture, Tuesday 8th Dec at 6:30pm – see here