The Hampstead Observatory is one of the few observatories in London open to the public for viewing the night sky, and is reopening to the public following repairs to the building.

Just in time for the night skies to return.

Main Telescope – photo taken during daylight hours (c) ianVisits

The observatory’s main telescope is also marking its centenary at the site, having been loaned to the observatory in 1923, and formally gifted to them in 1928. It’s ideal for viewing the Moon, planets and double stars.

As long as the skies are clear, you might get to see Saturn’s rings, Jupiter’s cloud belts, the craters and mountains on the Moon and some of the brighter ‘deep sky’ objects – star clusters, nebulae and the odd galaxy. Volunteers at the observatory will set up the telescope on the night for the best things to look at.

Weather forecasts permitting, the observatory will be open on Friday and Saturday evenings, and they will release tickets on Thursday mornings if they will be open that coming weekend.

Tickets are free — with cash donations on the night appreciated — and will be available usually on a Thursday morning from here.

More details about the Hampstead Scientific Society, which owns the observatory, are here.

The entrance to the observatory is on Hampstead Grove, next to the Whitestone Pond, about a 10 minute walk from Hampstead tube station on the Northern line.


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