'Jane has taken up the challenge of doing for a new generation what Sir Patrick did for us all those years ago.' Dr Brian May

'Many new books on astronomy are now published every year but I am emphatic in saying that Jane Green's is outstanding.' Sir Patrick Moore, CBE, FRS

'Think Professor Cox but without the annoying soundtrack.' J G Futers, Peeblesshire, Scotland

Saturday, 13 December 2014



The Cosmological Distance Ladder
Dr Robert Smith of Sussex University
Sunday 18 January 2015 - 2000hrs UT

 To listen in follow the link:  http://astronomy.fm/tag/under-british-skies/

UCKFIELD 105FM Radio Show
Wednesday 4 February 2015
(click icon at left to listen in)
with media partner BBC Sky at Night Magazine
Due to the overwhelming success of this year's National Tour (see below) there will be another in 2015!

Friday 27 February 2015

Thursday 5 March 2015

I have been invited to give two presentations
at the school where Sir Patrick himself taught for 8 years
Holmewood House School
Tunbridge Wells
Friday 8 May 2015

will also form part of the
Solarsphere Festival
14 - 16 August 2015


Watch this space!


Friday, 29 August 2014

with Media Partner BBC Sky at Night Magazine
October 2014
'A first and a triumph'
... Professor Chris Lintott, astrophysicist and co-presenter of the BBC Sky at Night television programme.
'I can honestly say one of the best, if not the best production of astronomy I have seen on a live stage'
... Peter J Williamson, FRAS

'Consummate professionals.  Highly engaging and refreshing'
... Chris Wood, Vectis Astronomical Society

TOUR OF THE UNIVERSE launched at Downton Moot, Wiltshire on 27 September 2014 where a 250+ crowd joined us in an outside medieval amphitheatre for a taste of our National Tour with media partner BBC Sky at Night Magazine.  It was a huge success ...

... and was followed by the big theatre official launch at Dorking Halls on Saturday 4th October 2014 where with host and co-presenter, rocket scientist Neil Phillipson, Professor Chris Lintott, and myself we brought our unique take on astronomy to a 400+ audience.
From there we presented at The Nottingham Playhouse, the Altrincham Garrick Playhouse, Manchester, The Epstein, Liverpool, The Atkinson, Southport, the King's Theatre, Cardiff and The Cresset in Peterborough.
Just the most fabulous three weeks.  Amazing audiences.  Overwhelming feedback, both on scene, but also on Twitter and Facebook. 
And this is not the end.  We've already been booked for the major SOLARSPHERE Event in Wales in August next year, with more offers in the pipeline.
And TOUR OF THE UNIVERSE 2 - a bigger and even better tour - is already being planned!
If you missed us this year - join us in 2015!
Below are some of the highlights ...
Co-host, Neil Phillipson, and me, presenting the 'news segment'
at the inaugural Dorking Halls event.

The chat show segment with Professor Chris Lintott

Book-signing at Dorking Halls

In action at the Nottingham Playhouse
Neil in full flow!
The Altrinchum Garrick, Manchester
Twenty seconds to go but what to do with a microphone?!
The historic Epstein Theatre in Liverpool - all set to go!
BBC's Stargazing Live's Mark Thompson with host, Neil Phillipson,
pre-show at The Cresset, Peterborough
Book-signing with Mark, post-show, Peterborough
And again ...
Another fan ... starting young!
Just the most amazing journey!
An enormous thank you to our amazing special guests:
Professor Chris Lintott
Will Gater
Mark Thompson
Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock
Dr Rhodri Evans
Equally enormous thank you to my host, co-presenter and friend, Neil Phillipson and Adele Horton - organiser, all-round invaluable wonder-worker, and friend.
So many happy memories!
Join us next year when we'll be doing it all again, and more!

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

at the
Historic Library Airdrie Observatory
Monday 6 October

From left, Aileen (secretary) Jack (operator), Jim and Bob (curators) and me
with the famous 6" Cooke refractor at the historic Airdrie Observatory.
Image credit:  Alan Watson
A wonderful evening with some truly fabulous people who were warm, welcoming and enormously enthusiastic.  I was honoured to be their first female speaker, and felt amongst friends.  What a trip and what an unforgettable evening. 
A big sincere thank you to all!
 Image credit: Alan Watson

Sunday 17 August 2014
2000hrs BST
Comet 67P/C-G imaged on 7 August 2014 by the Rosetta spacecraft's OSIRIS narrow-angle camera when 65 miles away from the 2.5 mile wide nucleus.
I was extremely privileged to join Richie Jarvis and Paul Harper, the hosts of Astronomy FM Under British Skies, for a live radio show in which we discussed the thrilling ESA/NASA Rosetta Mission to Comet 67P/C-G.
Our special guests included: Dr Colin Snodgrass, Marie Curie post-doctoral Fellow at the Max Planck Institute and co-ordinator of the ground-based observations of professional observers.  He is also a specialist on the Rosetta OSIRIS camera team; Dr Claudia Alexander, a Rosetta Project Scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and Dr Padma Yanamandra-Fisher of the Space Science Institute and Rosetta co-ordinator for amateur observers.
Pre-records for this programme were also contributed by Dr Matt Taylor, ESA Rosetta Project Scientist, and Dr Joel Parker, a Director at the Southwest Research Institute, Project Manager/Science Team Member on several space missions, including LRO and New Horizons, and Deputy Principal Investigator for NASA's Rosetta ALICE instrument.
It was a fascinating broadcast and is now available as a podcast below:
Look out for more Astronomy FM Under British Skies radio shows as the exciting Rosetta spacecraft drops its lander onto Comet 67P/C-G's surface and continues its journey towards perihelion in August 2015.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

 With media partner BBC Sky at Night Magazine
I have been invited to team up with rocket scientist Neil Phillipson and some of the UK's most renowned astronomers to co-present a show with a difference - TOUR OF THE UNIVERSE! - with media partner BBC Sky at Night Magazine.
Special guest include Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock, space scientist, and Dr Chris Lintott, astronomer, both presenters of the BBC's Sky at Night television programme.
Also joining us will be Dr Rhodri Evans, Honorary Research Fellow of Cardiff University, Mark Thompson, astronomer, author and presenter of BBC's Stargazing Live and Will Gater, astronomer, presenter, author and journalist for the BBC Sky at Night magazine.
Neil says: "The show is a night like no other - we take our audience on a whistle-stop journey through space and time, sharing the incredible nature of the Universe in a humorous, passionate and inspiring way."
Stunning planetarium-style presentations provide the backdrop to an intimate and uniquely insightful look at the wonders of the cosmos, touching on frequently overlooked fundamentals and guiding the audience to a jaw-dropping appreciation of the night sky.  Alongside Neil and our special guests I intend to bring the images alive with an interactive, light-hearted and illuminating approach.
TOUR OF THE UNIVERSE launches at Dorking Halls on 4th October 2014 with nine other national theatre venues to follow, including Nottingham, Altrincham, Liverpool, Southport, Portsmouth, Cardiff, Bath and Peterborough.
Full details are available on the official TOUR OF THE UNIVERSE website (see below) as well as via national media, Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites!

Come along and join in the fun!

TOUR OF THE UNIVERSE: Official Website

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Welcome to my blog!
Feel free to 'drop in' any time to catch my monthly radio appearances on Uckfield 105FM with presenter Tony Williams where we share all things astronomical, and have a great deal of fun along the way!  Simply click the Uckfield 105FM icon at left.

In yesterday's show - Monday 4 August - we discussed the two most distant red giant stars recently discovered in our Milky Way Galaxy's outer halo; a whopping 750,000 and 900,000 light-years away! 

Also on the menu was ESA's exciting Rosetta mission whereby a spacecraft is about to rendezvous with, orbit around, and drop a lander - Philae - on the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko - a mission we shall follow closely in forthcoming shows.  I shall be join Richie Jarvis on Astronomy FM at 8.00pm on 17 August where I shall be privileged to join a live link-up with some of the key scientists working on the Rosetta Mission - more to follow.

Also enjoyed on our radio show was the discussion on the dramatic 'mega Moon' about to make its closest approach to Earth for many years at circa 8.00pm on 10 August.  From there we shared the delights of the Perseid Meteor shower, due to peak on 12 August, when, despite the Full Moon, some fast bright meteors and possible fireballs will still be visible as they blaze across the night sky.  And finally, the thrilling conjunction of Venus and Jupiter pre-dawn on 18 August.  Seen against the backdrop of M44, the Beehive Cluster, the fact that these two dazzling planets will appear a mere 15 arcminutes apart should make for an amazing sight.  My alarm clock will be set!
In addition to the exciting news about TOUR OF THE UNIVERSE - a national astronomy tour with media partner BBC Sky at Night magazine (see above) - details of other exciting events in which I am privileged to be involved will also appear here ... so dip in any time and join me for the start of more astronomical adventures!

Keep looking up!
Wednesday 2 July 2014
It's that time again!  Feel free to listen in to a recording of today's radio show where, with presenter Tony Williams, we share the delights of the summer Milky Way, the mighty Andromeda Galaxy and many other galaxies beyond my recollection - and much more besides!
The Andromeda Galaxy (M31)  Credit: Nik Szymanek
Simply click the Uckfield 105FM icon at left and follow the links.
Don't forget to join us next month at 1030hrs on Monday 4 August.

Monday, 2 June 2014

Encounters is a North Lanarkshire wide cultural festival with an eclectic programme that has something for everyone.  A month long feast of activity that includes authors, films, drama, dance, music, visual art and more, offered up through events, workshops, exhibitions and initiatives across the North Lanarkshire area.
I have been invited to be a speaker at this year's Festival on Monday 6 October 2014.
The historic Airdrie Observatory
The event will take place in the historic library of Airdrie Observatory.
I feel honoured to have been asked and very much look forward to the evening.
More details will be provided when known.

Monday 2nd June 2014
Feel free to listen in to our monthly show where, with presenter Tony Williams, we tackle the topical issue of this month's summer solstice.
We also share tomorrow's rare triple transit of Jupiter's moons, an event next repeated in 2015 but then not again until 2032!  Noctilucent clouds and this month's planets also add to the mix, and a whole heap of fun besides! 
Simply click the Uckfield 105FM icon at left.
Don't forget to join us again at 1030hrs on Wednesday 2nd July 2014.
Keep looking up!

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Tuesday 13 May 2014
Feel free to listen in to yesterday's radio show where, with radio presenter, Tony Williams, we share the delights of the recent Illustris Galaxy Simulation, otherwise known as 'Burt' (!), the appearance of Comet 109/P LINEAR and a possible meteor shower, noctilucent clouds and this month's apparitions of Jupiter, Mars and Saturn. 
Simply click the Uckfield 105FM icon at left and follow the links.
Don't forget to tune in to next month's broadcast at 1030hrs on Monday 2 June 2014.
In the interim, keep looking up!
More exciting news about upcoming events will follow ...

Friday, 4 April 2014

Astronomy Interview
Friday 4 April 2014
Shooting Stars and Mars!
It's that time again!  Feel free to listen in to this month's radio show where, with radio presenter, Tony Williams, we share the secrets of April's Lyrids meteor shower, the delights of the planets Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn ... and a few thoughts on the Big Bang.
Simply click the Uckfield 105 FM icon at left and follow the link.
Happy stargazing and join us again at 1030hrs on Tuesday 13 May.

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Uckfield 105FM Radio
Astronomy Interview
Friday 7 March 2014
Feel free to join radio presenter, Tony Williams, and me, for our monthly astronomy show.  This time we share the wonders of Jupiter, currently perfectly placed for viewing in the night sky, the Moon's impending conjunction with the gas giant planet, Saturn, a close shave by asteroid DX110, the winter constellations, and much more besides ...

 Tune in by clicking the Uckfield 105FM Radio icon at left.
See you next month!

Thursday, 6 March 2014

Saturday 22 February 2014
The Horns Lodge Inn
South Chailey
Yet again, this was a really fun evening, enhanced this year by the fact that we actually enjoyed clear skies too!  As a result, Richie Jarvis took a crowd outside The Horns Lodge Inn to witness the passing of the International Space Station, as well as sharing the stunning views of Jupiter and Orion against the darkest skies in Sussex.  A raft of telescopes were also set up and members of the public enjoyed some amazing views of the gas giant planet as well as the Great Orion Nebula.
To complement the practical viewing sessions, astronomy author and broadcaster, Ninian Boyle, joined Richie and me in offering astronomy presentations.  Ninian shared the perils of Near Earth Objects, Richie, the latest rover activities on Mars and me, a journey from a speck of cosmic dust to the observable Universe, and beyond!  The pub was packed for its entire length, and was at least three people deep along the bar.  Subsequent feedback has been amazing.
It truly was a fantastic night - a gathering of like-minded people who clearly loved the subject, and a gathering of those who had very little idea about the great 'out there' but were possessed of an enormous thirst to know!  I felt privileged to play a part.
A big thank you to Richie, as ever, for organising the event and an even bigger thank you to all the lovely people who came along and made it so enjoyable.  Here's to another one next year! 
And a few more photos ...

organised by
The East Sussex Astronomical Society
The Star Inn, Pevensey
Saturday 5 April 2014
Hope to see you there.  More details to follow.

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Astronomy vs Astrology
Uckfield 105FM Radio
Tuesday 25 February 2014
Well, this was an idea of radio presenter, Tony Williams, with whom I share my monthly broadcast on all things astronomical.  He teamed me up with Sharon, Uckfield 105FM's Astrologer, for what became a lively discussion about the stars and planets, agrarian beliefs and the mysticism of horoscopes.  Tony led us way back into the realms of ancient Babylonia, Egypt, China and Australia, and great fun was had by all. 
Don't take my word for it, click the link below and listen in!
From left to right: Sharon, Tony and Me

Saturday, 8 February 2014

Uckfield 105 FM
Friday 7 February 2014
Feel free to listen in to Friday's radio show where, with radio presenter Tony Williams, we share Supernova 2014J which exploded 'recently' - some 11 to 12 million years ago in 'nearby' irregular galaxy, M82 in Ursa Major - but which is currently visible in larger amateur telescopes.
Supernova 2014J (circled) in M82: (NASA/Swift)
We also share the delights of February's night sky:  mighty Jupiter, beautiful Venus and her conjunction with the Moon on 26 February, the occultation by the Moon of the star Lamba Geminorum on 11 February, and much more.
To tune in just click the Uckfield 105FM icon at left.
Astronomy vs Astrology
Tuesday 25 February 2014
at 1130 hrs
Join Tony Williams, Uckfield 105 FM's resident Astrologer, Sharon, and me, for a live debate, or 'battle' as Tony would say (!), where astronomy goes head to head with astrology.
After much negotiation, Tony has thrown down the gauntlet and Sharon and I have picked it up!  So please do join us for what promises to be lively discussion and much debate about these two fascinating subjects.  I can't wait!
Due to the recent wet and windy weather - why am I using the word 'recent', it feels as if it's been around forever (!) - a number of astronomy events in which I was due to be involved have been cancelled.  I will update with new info as and when it becomes available.  In the meantime, watch this space!
Keep looking up ... those skies will clear ... eventually!

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Stargazing LIVE in the Pub

Re-scheduled to Saturday 5th April 2014
Details to follow.
The Star Inn, Pevensey, East Sussex
Saturday 8 February 2014
1400 - Midnight
Organised by the East Sussex Astronomical Society
The Star has a great southerly view with an array of telescopes for viewing the Sun and the night sky; all are welcome to come and view its wonders.
Observing will start at 2.00pm with the Sun, then early evening, the Moon, and, as it approaches dark, the ESAS will have laser guided tours of the constellations along with telescope viewing through a variety of provided scopes.
Talks will also take place throughout the afternoon and evening, of which I shall be one of the guest speakers.  If wet, still come along as we shall be presenting, whatever the weather!
Here's hoping for clear skies!
Follow link for full details and directions.
Horns Lodge Inn, South Street, South Chailey, BN8 4BD
Saturday 22 February 2014
1800 - Midnight
Organised by Richie Jarvis of South Common Observatory
South Chailey turns off the lights to view the night sky in one of the darkest corners of the country, with a full supporting cast of astronomers and telescopes to help out.
Following the success of last year's event, feel free to join us for an evening of viewing and presentations, including mine.  It was really great fun last year and I am sure it shall be again.
Again, let's hope for clear skies!
Follow link for full details and directions.
Hopefully see you there.

Friday, 10 January 2014

Uckfield 105FM Radio
Friday 10 January 2014
Feel free to listen in to this morning's show where, with radio presenter, Tony Williams, we share a journey into the realms of the Northern Lights and what can be seen in the January night sky.
Yours truly with radio presenter, Tony Williams
This local radio station is hugely popular with listeners, both young and old, numbering in the tens of thousands.  Uckfield 105FM is ranked third highest after BBC national radio and Heart FM.  Little wonder because everyone in the team is enthusiastic, energetic and works really hard to serve the local community.  They do a great job.  My monthly astronomy slot, since my initiation as Royle's Astronomer over two years ago, has gone from strength to strength. 
I feel I must thank Tony, Mike Skinner and Gary King for all their support, genuine interest and, above all, fun.  Astronomy is now well and truly on the map ... and I love being a part of their team.
To listen in click the Uckfield FM icon at left.
Happy listening and look out for those Northern Lights!
A note for the diary: on 22 February 2014 astro-imager, Richie Jarvis, will be hosting another 'Astronomy in the Pub' evening at the Horns Lodge Inn in South Chailey.  I have been invited along as a Guest Speaker.  Last year's event was really well attended and was terrific fun.  More details to follow, but hope to see you there!