An Update On The POVG

Enthusiastic support for all our activities this viewing season has been encouraging for all of us at POVG. In fact, our Night Tours have been particularly popular with near-capacity attendance throughout the season.

We could not have survived the intensity of 3, 4 and sometimes 5 Night Tours a week without our tireless band of volunteer hosts, telescope operators, and trainees. I’d particularly like to salute those who volunteered to be on duty several times a week during the peak periods.

Thanks too, to all the Night Tour hosts who have responsibility for the safety of the public, volunteers, and equipment, as well as the smooth operation and mood of the night. Somehow our volunteer hosts manage to balance enthusiasm, style, and humour amongst their entertaining astronomical explanations. Some have even donned a hat, or a special outfit to add to the vibe at our themed events such as Halloween, New Year’s Eve and Valentine’s Day.

Of course, it’s obvious to anyone who has tried that it takes several months of study and practice to operate a telescope skilfully, particularly when the equipment has a few ‘idiosyncrasies’. So we are indebted to experienced operators who also give their time to train and mentor a band of trainees who are learning those skills right now. Those trainees are learning fast, so look out for some new faces behind those red torches in the telescope domes very soon.

Special thanks too, to Dr Luke Davies who presented the POVG’s inaugural Summer Lecture this year. If you missed it, you missed a treat. (More details in an article later in this Newsletter)

So what’s in store for the next few months? With the highly successful Astrofest now a happy memory, over the next few weeks, we will be concentrating on some work around the buildings and grounds preparing for the upcoming Bickley Valley Harvest Festival Open Days on the weekend of 30th April & 1st May.

Then as the normal season draws to a close at the end of May, we will be launching our new Winter Night Tour format to run through June, July, and August.

Of course, there’s much more to POVG than Night Tours, and as you will read in this Newsletter, POVG volunteers contribute in many ways often combining their interest in astronomy with other passions such as photography, history, and education.

I hope you enjoy reading this March Equinox issue of POVG Newsletter and invite you to contact us through if you’d like more information about any of these topics.