On May 1st Bob Mizon the National Co-ordinator for the Commission for Dark Skies came to Freshford Memorial Hall with an inflatable planetarium. It was quite a sight as it rose into life. It could hold 35 visitors at one time. FLISCA part funded the visit.
Eleven 30 minute journeys into space were achieved inclusive of all Freshford preschool and primary school children plus local adults following on from them later in the afternoon. Preschool pupils had been making aliens in the preceding days. Bob complimented preschool in particular as being a highly attentive audience and also praised the schoolchildren.
As our speaker wandered around in the middle pointing at constellations with his light pen he explained with photos how the stars are marked in early cave paintings of animals. This is how people sought to make sense of their surroundings.There were no artificial lights to mar the magnificent starlit sky on view.
A life-size cardboard cutout of one of the first men on the moon welcomed us all at the launch pad. We learned that on the very first landing they placed the ‘Lunar Excursion Module’ (LEM) on the surface so gently that the legs of the LEM did not retract as planned. This left the foot of the ladder one meter above the ground. A decision had to be made to jump down onto the surface. Could Neil Armstrong get back up afterwards? With one shot at take off to return home they were the bravest of the brave and coolest of the cool. It is the 50th anniversary of this first landing on 20th July this year. This event was part of FLEWG’s campaign to protect the night sky. A key conference on this subject will occur in Bath in June.