Frequently Asked Questions

 

Can I make a booking for just me and one other?

Yes.  We accept private bookings from 1 to 25 people. 

What happens at your events?

Private bookings are very much tailored to the requirements of the group, but the general format is a presentation on a variety of astronomical subjects, refreshments, and telescope viewing time if the weather permits.  If you have any specific requirements, please get in touch to discuss with us.

What if it's cloudy and we can't see anything?

Sadly, the British weather is unpredictable, and some evenings will result in no sky viewing being available. If this happens, we will present the whole evening in our new immersive planetarium theatre which allows us to simulate the universe without the problems of bad weather, time, distance or gravity!

 

Because the observatory is run on a not-for-profit basis and by unpaid volunteers, we are unable to issue a refund on the grounds of bad weather.  

Can I cancel beforehand?

Yes.  If it looks like the evening of your booking is going to be overcast or raining, all we require is 24 hours' notice to issue you with a full refund.  If you do not cancel with us and don't arrive for the event, then it will be chargeable.

What should I wear?

The observatory is situated in the middle of a field on a farm, so hiking boots or wellingtons are advised if the weather has been wet recently.  Night time observing can get very cold so wear extra layers and bring a hat, gloves and scarf etc.  It is better to bring too many clothes than too few.

What should I bring?

A torch (red filtered if possible), binoculars if you have them, and enthusiasm!

Can I bring my dog?

Unfortunately, dogs are not permitted because of the valuable and delicate equipment that we use.

Are there toilets in the observatory?

No, but there is one in a nearby farm building, less than 50 metres away.

Is the Observatory Wheelchair Friendly?

The teaching room of the observatory is on ground level and is accessible by wheelchairs.  We ask that you inform us if any of your party are in a wheelchair as better access can be gained by parking in the owner's yard rather than the observatory car park.

Unfortunately, the main telescope in the observatory is not wheelchair accessible.  There are 4 steep steps to get to it due to the small size of the dome where it is housed.  However, we have a number of smaller, portable telescopes that can be adjusted to obtain a view from a seated position.  Again, please contact us with your specific requirements.