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Our events calendar lists events both at the Observatory and other stargazing events being held in the North Pennines area. To view details about an event simply click on a calendar entry or use 'Switch to List View' to see events as a chronological list

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Upcoming events

    • 28 Jun 2018
    • 5:53 AM

    • 27 Jul 2018
    • 9:20 PM

    • 29 Jul 2018
    • 2:00 AM - 3:00 AM

    The Delta Aquarid meteor shower favours the Northern Hemisphere where it is likely to be more visible.  These meteors are produced by the debris left behind by the Marsden and Kracht comets.

    It is an average shower which runs annually from July 12 to August 23. This year it will peak on the night of July 28 and the best viewing hours will be after midnight and before dawn on the morning of July 29 between 2-3am.

    • 13 Aug 2018

    The Perseid meteor shower will reach its maximum rate of activity on 13 August 2018. Some shooting stars associated with the shower are expected to be visible each night from 23 July to 20 August.

    Annual meteor showers arise when the Earth passes through streams of debris left behind by comets and asteroids. As pebble-sized pieces of debris collide with the Earth, they burn up at an altitude of around 70 to 100 km, appearing as shooting stars.

    By determining the speed and direction at which the meteors impact the Earth, it is possible to work out the path of the stream through the Solar System and identify the body responsible for creating it. The parent body responsible for creating the Perseid shower is 109P/Swift–Tuttle.

    Observing prospects

    The maximum rate of meteors expected to be visible is around 80 per hour (ZHR). However, this assumes a perfectly dark sky and that the radiant of the meteor shower is directly overhead. 

    The Moon will be 2 days old at the time of peak activity, presenting minimal interference.

    • 26 Aug 2018
    • 12:56 PM

    • 25 Sep 2018
    • 3:52 AM

    • 7 Oct 2018
    • 7:00 PM - 10:00 PM

    The Draconid is the first of two meteor showers that will pass through our skies in October.

    It owes its name to the constellation Draco which is a derivative of the Latin term draconem meaning huge serpent.

    The meteor is created when the Earth passes through the dust debris left by the comet 21P/ Giacobini-Zinner - sometimes the Draconid is also known as the Giacobinids.

    It’s an unusual shower because it’s best seen in the early evening instead of between midnight and dawn like most other showers. This year it will peak on the night of the 7 where it should produce 10 meteors per hour.

    • 21 Oct 2018
    • 11:59 PM
    • 22 Oct 2018
    • 7:00 AM

    The Orionid arrives every year and is visible from October 2 to November 7 when the Earth passes through the debris left behind by the most famous comet of all Comet Halley.

    The shower is expected to peak just after midnight on October 21 and right before dawn on October 22. At its peak 20 meteors per hour can be seen in the sky.

    It’s called the Orionid because the meteors seem to emerge or radiate from a constellation called Orion.

    • 24 Oct 2018
    • 5:45 PM

    • 11 Nov 2018

    The Taurid is a long-running minor - and slow - meteor shower, it only produces about 5-10 meteors per hour.

    The shower runs annually from October to November, with two separate showers with the South Taurids set to peak this year on the night of November 4 and the North Taurids on November 11 but the stretched-out nature could see peak viewing up to November 17 .

    It has a high percentage of fireballs, or exceptionally bright meteors so should be easy to see providing the skies are clear.

    • 17 Nov 2018
    • 11:59 PM
    • 18 Nov 2018
    • 7:00 AM

    November’s Leonid meteor shower happens every year between the 6th and the 30th. It occurs when Earth crosses the orbital path of Comet Tempel-Tuttle.

    This year it will peak after midnight between November 17 and 18. The Leonid shower is unique because it has a cyclonic peak about every 33 years - this is where hundreds of meteors can be seen per hour. The last time this happened was in 2001.

    • 23 Nov 2018
    • 5:39 AM

    • 13 Dec 2018
    • 14 Dec 2018

    In 2018, the Geminid meteor shower peaks on the night of December 13 and early morning hours of December 14.

    The Geminid meteor shower can be seen every year between December 4 and December 16, with its peak activity being around December 13-14. The shower owes its name to the constellation Gemini because the meteors seem to emerge from this constellation in the sky.

    Unlike most other meteor showers, the Geminids are not associated with a comet but with an asteroid: the 3200 Phaethon. The asteroid takes about 1.4 years to orbit the Sun.

    The Geminids are considered to be one of the most spectacular meteor showers of the year, with the possibility of sighting around 120 meteors per hour at its peak, which is on December 13th or 14th 2018

    While it is not necessary to look in a particular direction to enjoy a meteor shower, astronomers suggest looking towards the south to view the Geminids.

    The best time to view the Geminids is at night – after sunset and before sunrise.

    • 22 Dec 2018

    The Ursids shower arrives each year between December 17 and December 23. It is produced by dust grains left behind by comet 8/P Tuttle and is also called the Mechain-Tuttle’s.

    Unfortunately 2018 is not expected to be a particularly dramatic display.

    This year it will peak on the night of December 22 but this will coincide with a full moon which won't help visibility or viewing. The Ursids meteor shower has been known to produce short bursts of over 100 meteors per hour. But typically the shower is much sparser than that. In a dark sky, it might produce only five to 10 meteors per hour at its peak.

    • 22 Dec 2018
    • 5:48 PM

Past events

2 Jun 2018 Sunset to Sunrise at the Cosmic Pond
31 May 2018 EXOPLANET TO BEYOND children’s drawing workshop
29 May 2018 Full Moon at the Cosmic Pond
29 May 2018 Astronomical event: full moon
6 May 2018 Astronomical event: Eta Aquarid meteor shower
5 May 2018 Astrophysics & Astronomy Today - NEWCASTLE
30 Apr 2018 Astronomical event: full moon
22 Apr 2018 Astronomical event: The Lyrid meteor shower
31 Mar 2018 Astronomical event: full moon
23 Mar 2018 North Pennines Astronomy Society Stargazing
19 Mar 2018 Corporate Induction & Star Tips for Profit Workshop
10 Mar 2018 Members evening: Mythology of the Night Sky
2 Mar 2018 Astronomical event: full moon
17 Feb 2018 Members evening: Gazing at the Milky Way
2 Feb 2018 North Pennines Astronomy Society Stargazing
31 Jan 2018 Astronomical event: 'super blue blood' full moon
20 Jan 2018 Members evening: Observing the Night Sky
15 Dec 2017 North Pennines Astronomy Society Stargazing
30 Nov 2017 Skywatch: Organised by the North Pennines Astronomy Society - CANCELLED DUE TO SNOW
11 Nov 2017 Members evening: Introduction to telescopes & night sky photography
29 Oct 2017 Eclipses Uncovered
28 Oct 2017 Build a Rocket Workshop (Session 3)
28 Oct 2017 Build a Rocket Workshop (Session 2)
28 Oct 2017 Build a Rocket Workshop (Session 1)
27 Oct 2017 North Pennines Astronomy Society Stargazing
27 Oct 2017 Real Astronomy
27 Oct 2017 Pop-up Planetarium @ Stanhope
26 Oct 2017 Skywatch @ Killhope Museum
25 Oct 2017 Stargazing and Astrophotography for Beginners
25 Oct 2017 Pop-up Planetarium @ Alston
24 Oct 2017 Constellations – Myths, Legends and Recognition
23 Oct 2017 Pop-up Planetarium @ Allendale
21 Oct 2017 Astrophotography Workshop
21 Oct 2017 Tour of our Solar System
19 Oct 2017 Stargazing Students workshop
15 Oct 2017 Stargazing Students workshop
6 Oct 2017 North Pennines Observatory Official Opening

Copyright Allen Valleys Enterprise Limited 2017

The North Pennines Observatory is owned and operated by Allen Valleys Enterprise Limited, a volunteer-run Community Benefit Society

The Observatory runs events for members, open events for non-members and is available for private bookings

All enquiries about the Observatory should be directed to AVEL on the Allen Valley Landscape Partnership phone number: 01434 683517

Allen Valleys Enterprise Ltd Allendale Village Hall, Allendale, Northumberland NE47 9PR 

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