Have another night with the stars…

Bannau Brycheiniog National Park Authority have teamed up with Dark Sky Wales to host an outdoor star gazing event at the National Park Visitor Centre on Friday 28th January from 5.30pm until 9.00pm – although avid astronomers will be welcome to stay longer.

If the skies are clear, shooting stars, nebulae, galaxies, clusters, and even a few planets will be at your fingertips – offering star gazers a wonderful opportunity to view the night sky, see great views from telescopes and learn about star gazing equipment and astronomy.

At 1100ft above sea level, the National Park Visitor Centre is fast becoming the perfect location to host star gazing events, with the ideal combination of being easy to travel to and away from the intrusive glare of light pollution.  Another star gazing event (both indoor and outdoor) is also planned for Saturday 5th March at the Visitor Centre with the help of Cardiff Astronomical Society.

Richard Levy, National Park Visitor Centre Manager said:  “While the winter nights are still long it’s the perfect time to celebrate the start of a new star gazing year with an outdoor event like this.  With experts on hand from Dark Sky Wales, visitors can learn more about the mysteries of the night skies, astronomy and what to look out for.  At previous events visitors have seen Mars, Jupiter, the International Space Station whizzing overhead at the beginning and even Saturn and its rings.  We are planning to host further star gazing events throughout 2011 because of overwhelming demand to discover more about our dark skies.”

The event will be held outside so please bring warm clothing and if you do bring a torch, please cover it with a red filter (a simple skimmed milk red lid works very well apparently!)  The event is free and the Visitor Centre Tearooms will be open for warms drinks and delicious home cooked food.  No booking is required but if you’d like further information please contact the National Park Visitor Centre on 01874 623 366 or email visitor.centre@breconbeacons.org Please note that if the weather is particularly bad the event will be cancelled.