Hertford  Astronomy Group

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Meetings held at:

The View (Formally Fairway Tavern)

Panshanger Golf Complex

Old Herns Lane,

Welwyn Garden City,



Tel:01707 336007

What happens at our meetings?

Doors open at 7:00 for the pre meeting show of astro photographs taken by group members followed by main meeting arrival from 7:30 for the meeting due to start at 8:00 but several club members and friends gather before this to have a drink and chat in the bar.

Following welcome announcements we have a guest speaker who speaks on the subject of the evening for about 45 - 60 minutes.  This is followed by questions relating to the talk.

Announcements about forthcoming events follow.

You can then choose from the following activities:

  1. If the weather is clear telescopes and binoculars brought by members are set up outside for some observation.  Members doing so will be pleased to share their scopes with others.
  2. If you need help with some equipment then now is your chance to bring it in.  Others in our club will be more than willing to help you .  Don’t be shy, we get just as excited about a telescope bought at the charity shop for £20 as we do one costing many times more.
  3. Just socialise with others - about anything!

We look forward to seeing you.  No need to book - just turn up.

2017-18 Programme

13 September 2017

Roger O'Brien  

40 Years of Voyager


27 September 2017  

Damian Peach



11 October 2017  

Sue Nelson

Women in Space  

8 November 2017  

Derek Jones

The Isaac Newton Telescope: the 50th Anniversary


13 December 2017  

Colin Stuart

13 Journeys Through Time And Space  

10 January 2018  

Paul Money

Images of the Universe - Part 2

14 February 2018  

John Collins

Proxima Centauri

(Click for Flash presentation of slides)

14 March 2018  

Nigel Henbest

Cosmic Quest


11 April 2018  

Stuart Eves

The Future is out of this World


9 May 2018  

Derek McNally  

60 Years of Astronomy



13 June 2018  

Jerry Stone  

Time for Space

Draft Minutes of 2017 AGM

Membership details:

Download Application Form

13 June 8:00pm

Time and Space

Jerry Stone

H: +14°
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Welwyn Garden City
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Draft Minutes last committee meeting

Have you ever wanted to try photography with your telescope?

Maybe, but not quite sure where to start?

Our club has a section that goes by the grand name of Hertford Astronomy Group Astrophotography Section (HAGAS for short).  This is a group of people who also wondered how to go about taking photos with their gear and through trial and error have come up with some stunning photos.

The point to get across is that they also didn’t know how to do it once and now get together to share experiences and techniques.  Moreover, they are delighted to help anyone who wants to make a start in this fascinating area.  So, what are you waiting for?  Send Martin a message and come along to one of their meetings and have a go at shooting the stars.

Remember two things:

  1. They were all beginners once.
  2. There is no such thing as a daft question - only the one you don’t ask.

Have a look at these photos that have been taken by the people who attend this group:

More photos on the HAGAS Imaging Group page

Astronomical Notes -

Were you aware that our Milky Way Galaxy has two close companion galactic neighbours, nearer than the Andromeda Galaxy?


                             Messier 54                                            Sagittarius “Teapot” Asterism ( γ² is the spout )                     

Sagittarius Dwarf Galaxy (Sgr dSph/E7), discovered during the 2-micron all-sky infrared survey (2MASS) and is thought to be an irregular elliptical shaped stellar over-density, possibly shaped by interacting gravitational forces with the Milky Way Galaxy, resulting in a star accretion trail.

At 50,000 light-years distance from the Milky Way centre, the constellation contains a large globular cluster M54 - NGC 6715, (RA 18h Dec -30ᵒ 29'), which is thought to have a black hole at its centre. The cluster can be found near ζ Sagittarii.

Canis Major Dwarf Galaxy - CMa Dwarf, PGC 5065047 is an irregular elliptical shaped stellar over-density of around 1 billion stars located at 10,000 light-years from the galactic centre of the Milky Way and is currently 26,000 light-years away from the Solar System. This also displays several star accretion trails.

The star trails in the above all have Milky Way Galaxy polar orbits.


Thanks Terry

Jerry Stone is a freelance presenter on astronomy and space exploration. He runs Spaceflight UK, giving presentations on space topics and running space workshops for schools all over the UK.  He is also our Programme Secretary and arranges our club’s talks, events and visits.

He is probably the only person to have spoken about space at:

The British Science Festival

The Edinburgh Festival - where he launched a rocket

The Palace of Westminster

Patrick Moore’s garden

The Royal Institution

The Royal Observatory

The World Science Fiction Convention

... and a rock festival!

He is also a broadcaster, often interviewed on BBC 3 Counties Radio where is is their resident space expert, and he is often on Sky News when there is a space story to be covered - such as the recent launch of NASA’s latest mission to Mars ... and he is an Interplanetary Poet!

He is the author of “One Small Step”, a book about how we went to the Moon, which Sir Patrick Moore described as “Marvellous!”.  Copies will be available (price £15) which Jerry will be happy to sign.

His subject for us is “Time and Space”, in which he will be explaining how measurements of time came about as a result of our observations of space.

Those of you familiar with Jerry’s presentations know that they are entertaining as well as informative.  This one is no exception - it even starts with a fun quiz!

Institute of Physics Lectures University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield


 Wednesday 30th May


  'The day they Launched a Woodpecker'

Jerry Stone


Lindop Building

College Lane Campus, Hatfield

Wednesday 30 May 7:00pm

Free to attend but as a courtesy please email Diane to let her know of your intention to attend.

More Details Click for larger version