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About Meerkat

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  1. He has already got the 60mm Celestron refractor on a goto mount, (never used the goto), which has got a red dot sight on it. Would this be better, or is there something else that you would recommend? Thanks, Steve
  2. I had a call from my neighbour, who was in Jessops, asking me to look up a scope they were selling at £99.99, usual price £250 or something, (haha), a 130mm reflector. I had a quick look on-line and suggested he wait until we had a chat. I said he would probably be better off with a tracking scope and by the time he fitted a motor, (if one could be fitted), he'd be better off with another scope. Long story short, he ended up ordering the Skywatcher Explorer 130P Supa Trak Auto from FLO. Delivery took a couple of days, it arrived yesterday, and was all assembled last night. Must admit, that black finish looks gorgeous. Just hope I have recommended him a scope that he ends up really liking I will let you know how he gets on with it. Steve
  3. Excellent news at last. Went to go to bed last night, switched off the kithcen lights and immediately noticed a difference, no light shining in through the window. Looked out, and lo and behold, the flat glazing has been fitted. The difference is really noticable, especially in our bedroom where the only light is now that relfected by the white weatherboarding, and not direct light. A long and often futile feeling battle to get them done, but our councillor really came up trumps on this one. Steve
  4. Quick update, just had an email from my councillor, the housing association are going to pay for the zero light pollution glazing, and the developer is going to supply the labour to fit them. So a bit of a result really, hasn't been done yet but hopefully will by next winter...... Quite why it had to go this far is a mystery to me as the solution is really very easy and costs peanuts. Steve
  5. Also from DEFRA Statutory nuisance from artificial light and light pollution 90 Artificial light nuisance may be, but is not necessarily, the same as light pollution. Artificial light nuisance is a source of light that in the opinion of a trained public health professional, who makes an assessment on a case by case basis, interferes with someone’s use of their property, and / or is or might be prejudicial to someone’s health. Light pollution could be defined as any form of artificial light which shines outside the area it needs to illuminate, including light that is directed above the horizontal into the night sky creating sky glow (which impedes our views of the stars), or which creates a danger by glare. Although light pollution might affect the aesthetic beauty of the night sky and interfere with astronomy, it is not necessarily also a statutory nuisance. The statutory nuisance regime is not an appropriate tool with which to address light pollution per se. So it does say "interferes with someone's use of their property" Maybe I need to go back to EH yet again? Steve
  6. These lights will not be adopted by KCC who have already said they would fit shields. The problem I have is that they are owned by a housing association who are paying the original developer maintenance for the road and lights. The lights outside the front of our home are KCC owned and they have already fitted a shield to the one outside us, as our neighbour complained about it after the filaments were changed to bright white ones instead of a muted orange. It was sorted in three days. It says something when a shield was fitted to this and it's 3 lux at road level compared to 28 lux at the back of us. Steve
  7. We've just had a new library built in Maidstone, and what type of lights have they used in the car park? Those that project the light vertically to hit a downwards facing reflector, well not downwards so much as sideways. Unbelievable. Steve
  8. Our councillor is really throwing their weight around threatening press releases and court action etc. There is now light at the end of tunnel as one of the major protagonists have said if the cost is shared between the two "owners" of the lamps, then they will fit the flat zero pollution glazing. Now just got to wait a couple of weeks for the people involved to get back to our councillor with what they are going to do. Steve
  9. Snowballs chance in hell of that I think..... I'll ask but the feeling I get is that they are only interested if it's an open and shut case, there is no way they want to go to court to fight it because it costs money. He's not said that in so many words, but it was very implied. All is not lost as our local councillor is really interested in fighting this and has already spoken to him about it to find out about the legalities. Next step is for the councillor to write to the 3 parties involved asking for reasons why these lights cannot be shielded. Steve
  10. Spoke to EH again, same guy as visited me before, and he said unless something has changed there is still no criminal nuisance. I asked about my right to enjoy my property and he came up with that it's a human rights thing not an EH thing and if I want to pursue that avenue I need to read up on human rights. Go figure.
  11. Thanks for that, the actual phrase used by environmental protection uk is "neighbours' right to enjoy their own property" So I have applied for a reassessment under that condition. Do you think that I will have to prove that I am an existing amateur astronomer? Steve
  12. I have spoken to the EH guy as well, he said that as the light is not directly shining into the bedroom he can't do anything. He wasn't interested in the glare and the effect it has on my hobby. He also said, and I find this strange, is that I would have a good case if I took them to court under Section 82. Just sounded to me like they did not want to spend any money. I have a meeting with the local councillor who is responsible for where the development is this Saturday. My councillor didn't even reply to my emails. I know this sounds strange but the parish border is at the bottom of my garden. Steve
  13. In fact these new houses are covered by "Secure By Design" principles and have to be signed off by the police. 30.3 of this document states "SBD requires that only luminaries with suitable photometry serving to reduce light spill and direct light only to where it is required may be used" However, the local police guy looking after SBD just says he is not a lighting expert and is guided by the lighting specialist, who happens to be paid for by Bellway Homes, the developer. So if the developer says they are OK, they are OK. I have also asked using the Freedom of Information Act for all of the information the SBD police guy has concerning the lighting. Just got back that the information is not in a format easily retrievable and would take more than 18 hours to sort it, so they are exempt. You couldn't make this up. I could just imagine what my old boss would have said had he asked for similar information and I'd told him it would take me 18 hours to get it...... Steve
  14. This is just part of the response I sent, that was totally ignored. " In none of the plans can we see a lighting scheme. Our main bedroom is at the rear of our home and any lighting must not project in our rear windows. There is now significant evidence showing that exposure to light at night can disrupt the body's production of melatonin, a brain hormone best known for its daily role in resetting the body's biological clock. Secreted primarily in the brain, and at night, melatonin triggers a host of biochemical activities, including a nocturnal reduction in the body's production of oestrogen. Research has shown that decreasing nocturnal melatonin production increases an individual's risk of developing oestrogen-related malignancies, such as breast cancer. Please see http://www.britastro.org/dark-skies/pdfs/ile.pdf , (also attached), for guidance."
  15. Just an update from http://stargazerslounge.com/astro-lounge/165382-light-nuisance-new-development.html really. I have now managed to get the planning office to get the developer to supply a light plot using the zero light pollution flat lenses. Low and behold, they give the same lighting figures as the horrible bowl glazing, but without any light escaping above the horizontal. Still having a problem getting them to change them though, but at least I've got some science on my side now. Seeing the local councillor on Saturday to try to enlist her help. Also want to get the actual lighting level down equivalent to the surrounding roads. Steve
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