Welcome to the Liverpool Astronomical Society

If you’ve just joined the society then we all wish you a hearty welcome. You have joined one of the friendliest societies in the country and arguably the oldest continuous running Astronomical Society in the world.

Brief History

Founded in 1881 – over 130 years of Astronomy on Merseyside.

Registered as a Charitable Educational Trust (No. 519955), the Liverpool Astronomical Society actively promotes Astronomy throughout Merseyside and the surrounding area of the North West of England, UK.

Liverpool Astronomical Society is arguably the oldest amateur astronomical society in the world. Founded in 1881 the Society has over 130 years of experience behind it and can offer advice on a wide range of related astronomical subjects. We therefore invite members and interested members of the public, young and old, to extend their knowledge and enjoyment of the Science of Astronomy in friendly company.

Lunar terminator taken in 2010 by Mark Payne. Stacked 1.4x & 2x Canon teleconverters on a Canon 300mm f/4L IS USM, then cropped

Lunar terminator taken in 2010 by Mark Payne. Stacked 1.4x & 2x Canon teleconverters on a Canon 300mm f/4L IS USM, then cropped

LAS members and public visitors at the Leighton Observatory, Pex Hill during the Solar Eclipse of March 20th 2015

LAS members and public visitors at the Leighton Observatory, Pex Hill during the Solar Eclipse of March 20th 2015

M51, imaged by Mr. Rob Johnson

M51, imaged by Mr. Rob Johnson

Where are we

Leighton Observatory, Pex Hill

The LAS has the use of an observatory, Leighton Observatory, Pex Hill, Cronton, near Widnes, Cheshire, WA8 5QW. Directions and a map can be found here: About The Leighton Observatory

The Society’s monthly meetings and lectures are held in The Quaker Meeting House, 22 School Lane, Liverpool City Centre, L1 3BT. Map link: http://www.liverpoolquakers.org.uk/contact/local-map

What we do

Weekly Meetings

The Society members meet at the Leighton Observatory, Pex Hill on Wednesday evenings at 7pm. All welcome and we open to visitors too. Friday evenings at The Leighton Observatory, Pex Hill are usually members only. In addition, access to the telescopes and other facilities at the observatory is available for booking at most times, subject to the rules and guidelines of the society.

Monthly Meetings

Monthly meetings, including lectures and the annual AGM are normally held on the third Friday of each month 7pm – 9pm. These are currently held at:-

The Quaker Meeting House,
22 School Lane,
Liverpool City Centre,
L1 3BT

If you have recently joined then we ask you attend one of the monthly meetings so you can be officially accepted as member of the Liverpool Astronomical Society.

Young Astronomers Club

We have an active Young Astronomers Club that meet between October and March at the Observatory. Go here for more information: LAS Young Astronomers’ Club

Wirral Star Party and National Astronomy Week

We normally hold a star party at least twice a year. This is usually based at Wirral Country Park and takes place on Saturday evenings over one weekend.

There are lectures to attend; members to talk to; items for sale and displays of astrophotography and CCD imaging. Weather permitting; a number of telescopes would be available through which to observe the night sky.

Observational Sessions

The Leighton Observatory is open to members and visitors every Wednesday. Astronomy presentations including slide shows and computer-based displays are combined – weather permitting – with the chance to look through telescopes including the Society’s 12 inch LX200 Meade Schmidt-Cassegrain and 16 inch Lightbridge Telescope.

The observatory is also open on a regular basis for members’ evenings. It can also be booked for observational sessions or for use of the LAS computers subject to the rules and guidelines of the society. Contact the Observatory Director for more details.

Miscellaneous – Public Outreach Program

We also take Astronomy to the public via regular LAS Sidewalk Astronomers* events (held throughout the region. Since 1998 we have visited Liverpool, Southport, Runcorn, Kirkby, Halewood, Edge Hill College, Ormskirk plus many more locations. These events normally consist of Astronomy presentations coupled with observing through members’ telescopes (weather permitting).

Last but not least, we organise trips to dark sites, for example Kelling Heath, in Norfolk, the favourite is Llyn Brenig Reservoir near Denbigh in North Wales. This is an excellent dark site with breathtaking views of a sky unpolluted by artificial lights.

*Affiliated to the San Francisco Sidewalk Astronomers.

What can we offer you

The answer is plenty!

You can meet up with very friendly and helpful experienced amateur astronomers that are only too happy to share their knowledge and expertise with you.

Telescope rental

The society has recently started renting telescopes to members subject to the rules and guidelines of the society. This can be a very cost-effective way of deciding if astronomy is the hobby for you.

Publications

The society produces monthly newsletters and some very useful publications. Members have access to the society’s extensive library at Pex Hill.

Expertise

Specialists – including leading and well-acknowledged experts – in solar, lunar, planetary, meteor, comet and deep space observing; mirror grinding and telescope building; digital astrophotography and CCD imaging are all to be found among the society’s membership.

New members can rely on plenty of informal advice and assistance.

Membership Fees (correct as of 2017)

Annual Subscription £15.00
Junior Members (up to age 17) £5.00

Please note: Subscriptions are due on 1st October each year

British Astronomical Association (BAA) Logo, circa 2010

Liverpool Astronomical Society (LAS) Logo Circa 2014 - Present day

Federation of Astronomical Societies (FAS) Logo, circa 2012

North West Group of Astronomical Societies (NWGAS) logo, circa 2012

Contacts

Title Name Telephone Web/e-mail Notes
President Mr. Steve Southern Contact via the Secretary
Honorary Secretary Mr. Ken Clark 0151 639 8684 Contact the Secretary
Honorary Treasurer Mr. Chris Banks 0151 547 3459 Contact the Treasurer
Observatory Director Mr. David Galvin Contact the Observatory Directory Contact David for enquiries relating to the Observatory, equipment hire, Sidewalk Astronomy and outreach events
Minutes Secretary Contact the LAS Minutes Secretary

Alternatively, please feel free to contact or approach any of the other council members (names can be provided).