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The binoculars were acquired in 1966. "The binoculars"? Surely many people have binoculars? Yes, but these binoculars are rather historic and imposing. It is believed their objectives were Zeiss, from the early 20th century, and the binoculars themselves made by Ross of London in the 1930s, and that they were used in Malta (possibly in that island's famous Second World War defence). So they are truly historic. They are truly massive, with objectives of 150 mm (6 inches) and gather about 500 times as much light as the naked eye. You cannot just 'hold them up'; indeed, it takes two people to lift them. So they have to be properly supported. From the early days, they have been mounted above a chair (an old dentist's chair) in which the observer sits, as shown below.
|The binoculars circa 1970; Ron Maddison (right) and Geoff Dudley (Physics workshop); the observer is Chris Dickinson (Astronomy Society); note the run-off cover.
|The binoculars in the late 1980s or early 1990s in the brick-built shed with run-off roof (the 6-inch aerial camera is in the background).