Martin Dawson joined the York Astronomical Society in
1973 shortly after the society was formed and has been a member ever since. He
kept an occasional diary of events from that time. Some of the entries bear a
similarity to current happenings at the Society: meetings, talks and working
parties at the observatory, then at Acaster Airfield. An example entry:
7 Jan 1977 – ‘YAS Member Mrs. Gibson presented her talk on her trip to West Africa to see the 1976 October eclipse. 0.90p made in raffle (1.75) Planisphere as prize.’
The Society’s first crescent moon watch (Saturday 6 April 2019)
York Astronomical Society’s first crescent moon watch at Beetle Bank Farm near York was a big success – just a pity the weather didn’t oblige by giving us a clear view! The event was a Society initiative with the local Islamic community for whom the crescent moon is of religious importance. It was a trial run for what is hoped will become a regular event.
York Astro member Martin Dawson, has sent us a copy of the Society’s newsletter from 1974, two years after the Society was formed. Although the newsletter was printed on old technology with hand drawn illustrations, the topics covered would be familiar to members now; reports on recent talks, what’s to be observed that month and progress with the observatory. Back then, meetings were held at the Railway Institute and planning permission for the observatory had been obtained, plus the Society has acquired a 12.5″ reflecting telescope – wonder what happened to that.
Inclement weather threatened us at the start of the day, but
it eventually turned sunny. There was a good turnout of volunteers and a number
of tasks completed. After setting the world to rights we started work. We were
refuelled at lunchtime by some great bacon and sausage baps from Angela.
People in York (well, those prepared to be up through the night) were rewarded with a spectacular view of the lunar eclipse on Monday morning. I feel sorry for some I know who got up through the night and see clouds, only to go back to bed to miss the spectacle when they cleared. York Astro members were busy posting their photographs to social media and Martin Dawson had a photo selected for the York Press lunar eclipse gallery and then with a front page picture and accreditation for him and the Society. Continue reading →
The remaining PortaKabin unit has been dismantled and suitable materials recovered for recycling or appropriate disposal. The remaining rotted wood has been burnt. Here you can see Martin Whipp in nostalgic mood watching the burning embers – Martin was there at the beginning and at the end.
Disappointment, Pride, Frantic, Tension, Emotional, Fantastical and Cloudy. Just seven words that sum up September for YAS
Thursday, September 6th
We learn that the Planning Officer is recommending refusal for our planning application for the move of the Observatory to Beetle Bank Farm. It is disappointing that they do no recognise the special circumstances for locating in the Green Belt.