The Star Party

There have been many social events over the years, including the ever-popular barbecues. But one of the most significant events was the Star Party in 1989. This was the inspiration of James Albinson, and was a celebration of the successful completion of the refurbishment project for the 24-inch telescope, and gave the opportunity for the Observatory's local supporters to come and see the latest developments.

In addition to Dr Maddison, long-term supporters of the Observatory were also present, including the famous local astronomical illustrator Paul Doherty. The iconic Patrick Moore and the Astronomer Royal Professor Sir Francis Graham Smith also gave their support. Everyone had a good time — luckily(!), the weather was fine for the event. Some pictures are shown below.

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Just in case it rains, a tent From inside the tent
A blue sky!: Ron holding forth
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Sitting down to eat Informal chat in the late afternoon sun The Astronomer Royal chatting to local supportes
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Patrick Moore chatting to some guests Patrick entertains on the xylophone Paul Doherty painting a comet
scan0038-th comet picture ‌  inside the dome  
The Astronomer Royal auctions Paul's completed painting (see behind)
The completed painting Inside the 12" dome