We hold observing evenings once or twice a month, less often in summer, more often in winter when the nights start early. New dates are announced at monthly meetings, on the bulletin board and on the News Page if there’s something special going on in the sky.
We also arrange Deep Sky Camps a few times each year. These are held somewhere where the skies are likely to be much darker than is usually the case in Orpington.
Generally we start our gatherings at the Change of Horses Pub in Farnborough at around 19:15 Universal Time (That’s 7:15pm GMT in winter, 8:15pm BST in summer).
Evenings when we meet at the Change of Horses Pub in Farnborough are not so dependant on the weather. If it’s cloudy (or worse) we’ll just stay at the pub. If it’s dark and clear we’ll move on to an observing site, usually the old mansion site at High Elms at about 19:45 UT (7:45pm GMT in winter, 8:45pm BST in summer), or sunset if it’s later than that.
If you wish to come to an observing evening but do not wish to come to the Change of Horses beforehand, then ask the Observing Officer (at a meeting, or via a private message on the forum) for his mobile number, and then phone him on the evening to ask whether High Elms will be open.
Some members host occasional Imaging Sessions at their own houses. These usually start at 8.15pm, and will be announced at our regular monthly meetings.
Now that we have a solar telescope we will be arranging occasional Solar Sessions, usually at the scope’s current keeper’s house. If you wish to attend a Solar Session then please talk to Sue or Jim at one of our regular monthly meetings.
Deep Sky Camps
Our Deep Sky Camps are held at various locations. Usually we use commercial camp sites, and each visitor will be expected to pay the camp site operator for their own pitch. We’ll usually try to arrange for our pitches to be in a group, so you’ll need to mention you’re one of the astronomers when you book.
Occasionally the Society books a site for its exclusive use, and on these occasions we’ll expect all attendees (anyone visiting the site) to contribute to the cost, even if they’re not actually camping on site.
Please always try check the forum for details of the arrangements before the event.