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Upcoming events



2023 August 12th Perseids Meteor Shower

Star party at Pilling

Cancelled due to poor weather forecast

Keep checking here and on the Google group for future events


Reports of previous BADAS events

Listen again to radio items:BADAS Gallery; Star of Bethlehem, and Gliese 581C (mp3 format)



Picture - Barie Cridland



2019 Inter Society Christmas Meal.


A good time was had by all and once again Professor Alan Chapman Gave an excellent talk on aspects of the history of Astronomy.



Picture - Pete Franklin



2019 Autumn Equinox Meal


Another good attendance at LA Piazza 2 in Bispham.



Pictures - Barrie Cridland



2017 Inter Society Chrismas Dinner


Yet another record attendance this year at the Garstang Golf and Country Club.

Professor Allan Chapman was the guest of honour once again this year. He talked about astronomy in the 20th century and kept the audience entertained with a wealth of facts and personal experiences.

Solar combined.jpg

Pictures - Terry Devon



16th 9th September 2017

The annual Starbecue was held at Blackpool Cricket Club.

Once again the weather was kind to us and members had an excellent night under the stars eating and drinking their fill.

Solar combined.jpg

Pictures - Stephen Cheatley



12 August 2017

Persieds Observing night at the dark site.

A good attendance and clear skies made this a very enjoyable night. Many meteors were seen.

The next morning our star photographer - Stephen Cheatley - appeared on National TV on the BBC "Breakfast" show (he's the one on the left).

The two Meteor pictures were taken by Stephen at our event and were also shown on the program.

Solar combined2.jpg

Pictures - Terry Devon



16th July 2017- Blackpool Cricket Club

The Society has a successful solar imaging afternoon alongside the cricket match.

Summer meal 2016

Picture : Pete Franklin



2017 July - Runcorn Astronomy Festival

Volunteers man the Society stand.

Summer meal 2016

Pictures : Barrie Cridland



2016 Inter Society Chrismas Dinner

Even more attendees this year meant that the event was held in a larger room at the Garstang Golf and Country Club.

Professor Allan Chapman gave a very well received talk on the life of William Herschel.

Summer meal 2016

Pictures : Stephen Cheatley



2016 Autumn Equinox Meal

Another good turnout at China Red in Poulton as the nights start to draw in.

Summer meal 2016

Picture: Pete Franklin



2016 Perseid Starbeque

Unfortunately the cloud didn't allow any observing on the Saturday night, but thanks who all who made it a well attended event

Summer meal 2016

Picture: Stephen Cheatley



2016 Summer meal

BADAS members enjoying themselves at the Ghurka buffet in Blackpool as they celebrate the summer solstice.

2015 Solstice Meal

Pics: Stephen Cheatley, Steve Waterworth and Terry Devon



2015 BADAS Solstice Meal

Twenty members of BADAS and their partners met at La Piazza II in Bispham for this year's Solstice Meal.

Much food and drink was consumed and a great time was had by all!

pic: Stephen Cheatley

pic: Peter Franklin


Observing Session

17th April 2015

A great session was had at Pilling - a LOT of telescopes were brought along by both the club and individual members - and the sky stayed clear for us.

See our Flickr gallery for some more images taken by members.



'A good array of scopes'


Solar Eclipse

20 March 2015

BADAS set up several scopes to give the public a good view of the eclipse from Lawson's Field. Unfortunately the clouds won the day but a reasonable view was had through the all too few breaks.

We'll be trying again in 2026.



Christmas Quiz winners.

Quiz Winners 2014

'The Milky Way Kids'


Christmas Quiz

01 December 2014

Ray came up with 65 varied questions again this year and we had 5 teams competing for the top prize of a trip to Iceland to see the Northern Lights.

After the usual arguments about the number of points awarded for each multi-choice, forename and/or surname questions and even spellings to certain answers, "The Milky Way Kids" were declared the victors with a total of 57 points out of a possible 'larger number'.

Unfortunately they didn't answer every question so did not qualify for the prize but did eat most of the chocolates.

Many thanks to all who contributed to the food on offer, same time next year.



Observing Session

The shadow monster coming to get us!



Good Friday?.


18th April 2014

Thanks to all who came along to our observing session on Friday - I don't think the car park has ever been so full before!

Pete arrived to start setting up the EQ6 (which unfortunately developed problems which we're looking into) as the sun was almost starting to set. About ten minutes later Terry arrived with Bob Rutter and Ray, and they started putting together the 8.5" Dob and the parallegram binocular mount. They were all a bit out practice as it had been so long since the last BADAS observing session.

Many others arrived as it began to go dark, including new members Jim and Ian with their 11" and 12" SCTs respectively, also PADAS member Graham and CLASS Astro members Nigel and Paul with their 8" Skywatcher Newts. Stuart was there with his 8" Skywatcher Dob, Stephen was using his DSLR, as were Graham and Pete. Nice to see Tony Bradley taking a break from his DIY duties to join us, and Ryszard too.

Jupiter was the first planet to be seen, closely followed by a fiery Mars low in the South-East. Thanks to Stephen for arranging a nice pass of the ISS and a couple of Iridium flares for us.

Before the moon rose it was good night for deep sky objects, with several globular clusters and spiral galaxies seen. Stuart was quietly ticking deep sky objects off his list with his 8" dob, while all the other scopes were also giving impressive views. Several meteors were seen, mostly sporadics but I think I saw one Lyrid going through the handle of the plough.

After a quick sweep with their torches to make sure nothing was left behind, Pete, Ian and Terry were the last to leave the site at round 1:30am.

It's traditional that at least some people leave before the group photo is taken - this happens because while some leave early others are still observing and we don't want to ruin their night vision

Christmas Quiz winners.

Quiz Winners 2013

'Terry's Tenors'


Christmas Quiz

02 December 2013

An excellent quiz from Ray with a large number of varied questions. Three teams of six this year once more produced a very close result with only 13 points between first and third.

There was a lovely selection of food, many thanks to all who contributed. And thanks to Pete for his update on comet ISON.



Lytham Club Day


The Ultimate GoTo Mount.

(Thanks to Nigel Telford for the pipe to make the telescope)

More pictures on our Yahoo Group pages.


22nd June 2013

It is a good job that the team who turned out on Saturday were hardened astronomers, well most of them. The British weather did its utmost to make Club Day either a washout or to blow everything away. At least during the procession the rain stopped, although the wind was very gusty, and a good sized crowd turned out to watch. There were the usual church and kiddie group floats and the Rose Queens from the local villages so the BADAS telescope made quite a change. We didn't win any prizes but certainly attracted attention with a couple of young lads declaring it was "The best float, ever!". The wind eventually got the better of Saturn's rings and stripped them away and the rain caused the starry background cloth to stick to the car but all in all it worked well.

As Pete, Ric and I walked alongside the car collecting donations for the Club Day Charity, we handed out flyers describing our society and told people that we were holding a solar viewing session on Lytham Green. Terry and Ray braved the elements and set up three scopes, the new society Ha Lunt, the Celestron Mak with Orion Solar filter and Ray's Helios with Herschel Wedge. Sadly the Sun was not visible for long and the strong wind rocked the scopes but a few people turned up to have a look.

Thanks must go to Anne for letting me loose on her car, Thomas for helping build the scope, my daughter Angela for driving it in the procession, her husband Ric and our own Pete for handing out flyers and collecting for Club Day and Terry and Ray who did a sterling job with the scopes in adverse conditions.

Observing Session

Bob and binsBADAS Group

Bob on the Bins and the BADAS Group.


19th April 2013

An excellent turn out for a perfect night of astronomy.

Observations included Jupiter and Moons, Saturn, First Quarter Moon, two passes of the International Space Station and later on, several Deep Sky Objects.

And just for good measure, comet Pan-STARRS was spotted as well.

As usual, many thanks to Stephen Cheatley for his photographs.


Equinox Meal


"Well fed and lubricated BADASers"


22nd March 2013


Fifteen members and one grandson enjoyed a pleasant couple of hours at the Gurkha Buffet in Blackpool to mark the Equinox. None of us expected to be trudging through the snow to get to this event, but then it was the first day of Spring!

The Gurkha provided us with our usual table tucked away in the corner, can't think why! These are always a nice, friendly get together with a good choice of food at a very reasonable price. We will be back for the next Equinox in September, put it in your diary now.

Observing Session


"The hunt for NEO"


15th February 2013


After three days of watching the weather forecasts improving for Friday night, the outlook for the Star Party seemed very good. How wrong they all were!

Setting off from Lytham under a starry sky, I arrived to find Pilling shrouded in mist and a completely cloudy sky. But BADAS folks are ever the optimist so there was an excellent turn out of fifteen and a nice variety of equipment to use. We did manage some good views of the Moon, Jupiter and its moons and could see the shadow transit of Ganymede and the later transit of Europa. Sadly of 2012 DA14 there was no sign, the clouds doing an excellent job of obscuring that part of the sky. We packed up earlier than usual and I was home about 23:00 to find the Lytham skies still cloudless as they had been all night. That's astronomy!!

Many thanks to Stephen Cheatley for his usual excellent photographs which make it look like daylight when it was actually pitch black. Love the one of me about to be "beamed up".


Stargazing Live - 2013

SGL_CrowdKids loved the Mars Rover

"Quite a good crowd, and the kids loved the Mars Rover"


11 / 12 January 2013

The first night of our SGL event produced an excellent turnout of BADAS members but not many members of the public. Hopefully this was because of the cloudy skies with not a star showing all night. Saturday produced many more visitors, about thirty five, who enjoyed over two hours of observing with a good range of telescopes set up in the playground at the rear of the club. Jupiter proving to be a real crowd pleaser.

We had a good array of telescopes, Paul had set up the display boards and Pete had the videos running all night. The Mars Rover proved a hit with the kids and Astronaut Al did his usual variable weight display.

All in all another successful Stargazing Live event and one which is bound to be repeated annually..




Inter-Society Christmas Meal

13 December 2012

Following a well established format, our annual get together with other local astronomical societies took place on December 13th at the usual venue of Garstang Golf and Country Club.

Fifteen BADAS members were joined at the table by guest speaker Dr. Allan Chapman who was due to talk about the transit of Venus. However, in light of the sad news earlier in the week about the death of Sir Patrick Moore, the talk was about Sir Patrick's contribution to the spread of astronomy to the 'masses' via, amongst other means, the long running Sky at Night programme. We also heard some wonderful anecdotes about Sir Patrick's life and his love of cats and cricket.

As always an excellent night out and a good start to Christmas.


Christmas Quiz winners.

Quiz Winners 2012

'Alison's Babes with Balls'


Christmas Quiz

05 December 2012

Another excellent quiz from Ray with the new music section proving a resounding hit. Four teams of five, all with lady captains this year, saw a very close result. There were only ten points between Alison's Babes with Balls and Terry's Tenors.

As usual there was a lovely selection of food, many thanks to all who contributed. Roll on next year.




Cloud Party (almost!)


Observing Session

19 October 2012

Weather forecasts are sometimes somewhat vague. Indeterminate. Wrong even. With this in mind, a few keen local amateur astronomers met up at Lane Ends, Pilling - only to find that when they arrived on site the clouds that had been predicted to clear had in fact thickened, multiplied and completely obscured their view of the stars.

Patience is a virtue and although we came very close to withdrawing to the local pub, after a pensive 90 minutes the sky began to clear and a few stars, then whole constellations appeared, and observing could begin.

Stuart did a fine job showing newer members around the sky with his 8" Dobsonian. Objects observed included Jupiter, M13, M57, M31, and NGC 884/NGC 869.

Here members are lined up for the traditional group photograph at the end of the session, alongside the BADAS Optical Surfaces 6" Newtonian.



Perseid Starbeque 2012


Perseids StarBQ 2012

10 August 2012

There was a record turnout for this year's (now annual I think) Perseid StarBQ at Lane Ends, Pilling.

The forecast for excellent weather didn't let us down, surprising considering the dismally wet year we've had.

The food, provided by the society and expertly cooked by Alison and Betty was delicious. Just don't mention the bread Terry ;-)

Amongst the strong turnout of society members, we also had a few visitors who follow our @badas_tweets Twitter account, hosted by Claire. One or two of them commented how much they enjoyed the practical aspect of our society.

Here you can see some of our members against a star trail image taken on the night by our own Stephen Cheatley. In the bottom left you can see our Claire, tweeting updates as the night went on.



Star Party 20/07/12







Observing Session

20 July 2012

A small gathering of BADAS members turned up for this observing session on what became a very clear but dewy night.

This shot of Stephen's shows himself, Stuart and Pete, and of course part of our Milky Way galaxy. The little white and red blob in the background is Stuart's 8" Dobsonian, which is actually far bigger than it looks in this impressive fish eye view!



BADAS Star Party

25 May 2012

Simon, Terry, Bob, Bob#2, Bill, Pete and Steve attended, we had the Society bins and 8.5" Dob, as well as members' own equipment - a mixture of cameras, bins and small telescopes.

The setting sun was again a popular pre-Transit of Venus test target, then the Moon, Venus, Saturn and Mars.

Venus was a very thin crescent, looking like a backwards capital "C" in a scope.

We actually managed to see Venus set behind Barrow. Other targets included M57 the Ring Nebula, M11 The Wild Duck Cluster, M13 and M92, both globular clusters in Hercules, and M81 and M82 - both galaxies in Ursa Major.

The wind was not as strong as feared but it did pickup a bit later and became noticably colder after midnight.

Star Trails

Group Photo

Photos: Stephen Cheatley






Lyrids Observing Session

21 April 2012

FIVE intrepid souls braved the wind, rain and clouds to enjoy a fine display of Lyrids when the clouds parted to reveal a lovely sky with good viewing.

Terry Devon said "We made the decision to go, it's happened before at Pilling - the sky just cleared."

Stephen said "A number of Lyrids were spotted, between us. One, in particular, was one of the best I've ever seen. It looked like a firework fizzling out across the sky. Plenty of satellites spotted and the ISS 2nd pass, too."


Star Party pic showing Venus, Jupiter and the Moon through haze

Photo: Peter Franklin




Star Party

24 March 2012

Members old and new alike met up at Pilling's Lane Ends Amenity Area for the evening's star party. The forecast was not great but it turned out to be a good event.

Although there was a lot of haze especially towards the end of the night, the seeing was at times excellent so fine views were had of Mars. The BADAS 8.5" Dobsonian and 100mm bins were put to good use as well as several members' scopes, including new joiners.

The haze made for some interesting photos of the conjunction of the Moon, Jupiter and Venus, kind of like a natural "Akira Fujii effect" (or SBLUR if you use IRIS ;-) ). We packed up around midnight when it just got too hazy.



Stargazers at telescopes

Photos: Stephen Cheatley




"A Night With The Stars" x2

20 & 21 January 2012

Riding on the back of the BBC's Stargazing Live and the fabled "Brian Cox Effect", BADAS hosted two nights of stargazing, video presentations, wall displays and even a question and answer session at Blackpool's brilliant Solaris Centre, Harrowside.

Both nights were well attended but especially Saturday night when we had mostly clear skies, and despite an icy wind Bob and Ray were out all evening as the queues for time at the scopes and big bins to see either Venus, Jupiter or M42 just didn't want to go down, until we had to pack up for the evening as the place was closing!

Our new AJE 10" SCT/NEQ6 performed very well, looks like it will be a key part of our arsenal from now on.

Well done to Paul and Pete for making most of the arrangements, and to everyone else who played their part in making this event such a success - thank you.

Thanks also to the BBC for helping to make the country go stargazing mad!

Can't wait for next year!

Here's the banner for the event.

Inter Society meal




Inter-Society Christmas Meal

15 December 2011

BADAS joined our friends from PADAS, LAMAS, Furness AS and a few other gatecrashers for our annual Inter-Society Christmas meal, held at Garstang Golf and Country Club.

We were very pleased to be joined once again by Dr Allan Chapman, who gave an enlightening talk on "Astronomy and Alcohol". Not necessarily the best combination you might think but some well known early astronomers did very well out of selling the stuff! (hic)

Can you spot the recurring themes from previous Inter-Society Meal pics?!



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