9 Aug 2016

Celebrate the Royal Greenwich Observatory

45 Years-ago the magnificent 28 inch refractor returned to the Royal Greenwich Observatory after a period of safe keeping. It was housed at Herstmonceux Castle for a while, then on 23 October 1971 Sir Patrick Moore was on hand to record the event for the BBC Sky at Night program.

In July I went back to the Royal Greenwich Observatory to meet the Curator Dr Louise Devoy, who was kind enough to show me around and learn something about the other telescopes their. Then I went over to see the 28 inch refractor itself. It is the 10th biggest refractor telescope in the world today, and the only one that visitors can look through on observational nights at Greenwich.

The Royal Greenwich Observatory was established in 1675 by King Charles II to find a means of measuring Longitude so mariners would not get lost at sea. The King appointed John Flamsteed as the first astronomer Royal.

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