Let us know (mail chairman at beckingtonas.org) if you are coming to the Christmas Social.  This is a fun-filled members (and family/partners) evening and will feature food, quiz, raffle, feel the sock and live music and maybe more.



Our AGM is Friday 20th June.  Mike Witt was scheduled to present his talk “Moons of the Solar System”, but unfortunately he has been taken ill and may not be recovered in time.  We will make alternative arrangements for a talk to accompany the AGM.


Many thanks to Bob Mizon for his entertaining and educational talk.  Several members requested that we make the list of ten targets for light-polluted astronomers available, so here goes:

Object Type Where Finder
NGC752 Open Cluster Andromeda Track right from the base of triangulum
Gamma Andromedae Double Star with high colour contrast Andromeda Last bright star in Andromeda moving up from Pegasus
Kemble’s Cascade

The Wristwatch and NGC1502

Asterism; star chain and includes an open cluster Camelopardus Find Perseus then extend a line Algol to Mirphak by approx 1.5 the distance
h3945 Optical (line of sight) double with high colour contrast Canis Majoris Find Sirius.  Track down to delta (Wezen).  The double is up and left from there.
Y Canum Venaticorum

La Superba


Red star Canes Venatici Approx halfway between Cor Caroli and Phad (in the Plough)

The Owl (Stick Man)

Open Cluster Cassiopeia Extend line from epsilon to delta by about half again.
R and T Coronae Borealis Variable stars Corona Borealis Star chart recommended
Sigma Draconis Star with high apparent velocity (2.3″ per year) Draco Near epsilon
Stock 4 Open Cluster Perseus Find double cluster and use a pointer — 7 degrees away on same declination
NGC7331 Sc Spiral Galaxy with off-centre nucleus Pegasus Consult a star chart


Thanks to everyone who came to the meeting this month.  I am sure you will agree that we had some excellent talks.  Haley Gomez gave us an insight into the current and on-going research into the mysteries of cosmic dust.  Titanic Stellar Explosions account for some of it, but lots of it is just mysterious.

Eliot Hall gave us an introduction to observing comets — it seems that they are good targets for insomniacs.  Like boy-scouts the comet observer must be prepared.

Steve showed off some Jupiter images.


A supernova has been discovered in the relatively nearby galaxy known as M82.  Just google M82 and supernova and a world of images and articles will open before your feet!

Sadly this is the second January that we have had to cancel the January slot.  Last year snow stopped play.  This year there was a fire in the hall which knocked out the electrics.  Luckily the fire was discovered and extinguished before any major damage could be done.  Let’s hope that next year doesn’t suffer the same fate.

We sent messages via email and through Facebook and Twitter and flagged up the problem on the website but some people still turned up expecting Mike’s talk on Moons of the Solar System.  Apologies to them for a wasted trip.  We will run Mike’s talk in June after the AGM, so we won’t miss out.


Bad news. The Baptist Hall has had a (relatively minor, I believe) fire which has damaged the electrics. This means that it is unlikely there will be a meeting on Jan 17th.

Please keep an eye on this web site for the latest news.

It’s the Christmas Social event on 6th December.  We’ll kick off at 7:30pm, so it would be good to arrive a bit before then.

This event is open to members and their friends/relations and we do make an at-cost charge for food.  There will be a quiz and raffle.  We have a singer/guitar player performing for us and of course there will be vittles.  Maybe some other activities will manifest during the evening.

Please let the committee know if you are coming and whether you would be supplying a raffle prize and/or pudding.  Also let us know if you have and special dietary requirements.