A night with the stars in Kielder Water & Forest Park!

Alicia Jeffrey

20 September 2012

Nearly 90% of people in the UK can′t see the Milky Way from their homes.

Images attached: 13 year old stargazer Alicia Jeffrey gets ready for the Kielder Castle Star Party. The Milky Way above Kielder

But you if you are in Northumberland on Saturday 6 October you can make up for lost time.

The Forestry Commission and Sunderland Astronomical Society are staging a special event to spot this celestial wonder above 62,000 hectare Kielder Water & Forest Park.

Thanks to the beauty spot′s magnificent dark skies it is one of the best places in England to view the object.

Stargazers will deploy powerful telescopes at Kielder Castle, sharing stunning views of star clusters and galaxies and also take novices on a whistle-stop tour of the constellations. Ranger Malte Iden explained:

"Light pollution snubs out the beauty of the stars, but Kielder Water & Forest Park is one of Britain′s darkest sports, perfect to admire the heavens. Wonders like the Milky Way take your breath.”

The event gets underway at 7pm and booking is required on 01434 250209. The cost is £6 per person and £5 for children. Bring binoculars if you have them and wrap up warm. The Duke’s Pantry café will be open before and during the event for food and drinks.

Stargazing is flourishing in the Northumberland wilderness!

Kielder Observatory has emerged as a top visitor attraction and the five night Kielder Forest Star Camp in mid-October is once again sold out. Meanwhile, Kielder Water & Forest Park Development Trust, Northumberland National Park Authority and Kielder Observatory Astronomical Society are bidding to have 400 square miles of Northumberland designated for the quality of its starry sky and to help combat light pollution.

1. Forestry Commission England is the government department responsible for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woods and forests and increasing their value to society and the environment. Forestry makes a real contribution to sustainable development, providing social and environmental benefits arising from planting and managing attractive, as well as productive, woodlands. To find out more got to www.forestry.gov.uk/NorthEastEngland

2. Media calls: Richard Darn on 0775 367 0038.

Richard Darn - richard@richarddarn.com - M: 0775 367 0038

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