Leicestershire

Email: Survey Officer

Astronomers

Observatories

Pearson’s Observatory [POSK] (1829-47),  The Rectory, South Kilworth, established by the Rev. William Pearson. Constructed as an east wing, it had a 3¼-inch Simms transit instrument [fl -44½-inch ] and an altazimuth circle. It wasused to re-examine a table he had drawn up from several catalogues of 520 zodiacal stars likely to occult, as being useful to navigation. from 1830 he employed Ambrose Clark, a village lad as assistant Then in 1834 due to smoke pollution, he built a purpose-built observatory at the south edge of the village. It was equipped with a large portable Jones transit instrument (1815), a Troughton altazimuth (1822), and 6.8-inch Tully refractor [fl 12-feet] (1825) on a parallactic ladder mount by Dollond (1827). These observations established the obliquity of the ecliptic, yielded a catalogue of stars occulted by the Moon, and led to his two volume ‘magnus opus’ Practical Astronomy (1824, 1829) for which he was awarded the RAS Gold Medal. The original observatory building has been converted into a private residence (Frost 2010; Howse 1986).

Astronomy Groups

Central Midlands Stargazers (CMS), founded (?).  An observing group for the Central Midlands area that meet for viewing sessions near Sibbertoft, South Leicestershire.

Leicester Astronomical Society (LeiAS), founded 1952 by 1952, a number of enthusiasts who met at the Leicester Museum.  Members meet monthly at John Eggleston Suite, the National Space Centre, Exploration Drive, Leicester.

Melton & District Astronomical Society (MDAS), founded in 1999, members (20-2016) meet at Gaddesby Village Hall,  Gaddesby (LE7 4WF).

Useful addresses

County Record Office
The Record Office for Leicestershire, Leicester & Rutland,
Long Street, Wigston Magna, Leicester, LE18 2AH
Telephone: 0116 2571080
Email: recordoffice@leics.gov.uk

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