An Update On The POVG

Since our last Newsletter in June, POVG volunteers have braved the rainy days and chilly nights to run winter night tours, demonstrated science concepts to school groups, continued to document heritage items and helped out with administration and maintenance.

The completion of the Sirius Dome for the Obsession 30 inch telescope, the repurposing of the offices in the Administration Building, commissioning of a new 14 inch Meade telescope, and two grants to support our heritage work are achievements for our volunteers to be proud of.

All these developments will be on public display at our second Open Day on Saturday 24th September when members of the public will be able to wander through the grounds, get involved in activities to inform and entertain, grab a snack and check out our souvenir packed Astro shop.

It is 120 years since the Perth Observatory was established at Mt Eliza, and 50 years since the move to Walnut Road, Bickley in the Perth Hills. For POVG this September also marks the 20th Anniversary of our formation in 1996.

30 inch telescope dome roof being lifted onto the dome walls. Image Credit: Matt Woods

During the proceedings at Open Day, the Sirius Dome for the 30 inch Obsession telescope will be formally opened and a booklet written by WA astronomy historian, Craig Bowers, to encapsulate the events of the past 50 years at Bickley will be launched.

Throughout the past 20 years, escalating over the past 18 months, POVG volunteers have donated their skills and talents to develop the technical, administrative, creative and public engagement areas of this growing organisation. We are incredibly grateful for all the time and effort everyone has given.

At this time, I’d like to particularly thank Mary Hughes who will step down from the demanding task of coordinating this Newsletter. For many years, Mary has been writing articles and coaxing others to rise to the challenge. So please enjoy the stories in this issue and if you’d like to learn more about getting involved, please send an email to

Diana Rosman