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Where are all the Somerset enthusiasts?


Dr Nurburg
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Based in Exeter it wouldn't take me long to reach Somerset so if you do arrange a meet I'd like to attend, please :headbang:

Though like James says, it will be difficult to find time before say next Feb.

That's cool, personally I wasn't thinking of much before the Spring anyway... a bit too cold really.

I'd be interested in just a drink before then, but that's only 'cos I could do with some introductory advice! lol

But yeah, Spring time must get something going... I need to get out and socialize a bit more... especially involving a shared interest and so this would be ideal for me.

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  • 1 year later...
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Did anything ever come of this? The "groups" board is very thin for Somerset groups/sites, but there's an ever-growing number of us on here. I'm aware of Bristol Astromomical Society (use Tyntesfield?) and MAD (Mendip and Dorset) who meet regularly around Warminster-way, but nothing else.

Speaking to the proprietor of the MC2 shop in Frome (MAD member) they used to meet at Charterhouse on the Mendips but stopped due to "insurance issues", hence the move to their current dark site.

I've sorted out an "individual" permission for a site that's relatively dark for a semi-urban/rural area and away from the street lights that plague my garden:) (still get the "low glow" from Norton-Radstock and Bristol though:mad:). Tried it once on my own - pretty good, but it felt a bit exposed in terms of attracting the attention of the chavs as you can be "seen" from the local sports club bar. Some looney chose that night to practice multiple donuts on the main road through the village :D. Out of sight from me but a bit un-nerving, so haven't bothered again :).

A few lucky herberts on here are down in the Quantock/Exmoor areas (nice and dark) and there's a few of us around the Mendips and South Bristol/Bath. Either end of the county is a bit of a trek respectively, but we must be able to sort something "convenient" out? Time for a Somerset group...?

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Ash, a few of us from South Bristol area are in the midst of establishing North Somerset Stargazers and have an outline of activities underway, possibly for a launch in late summer/ early autumn. It's been a little difficult to get going as we are all very busy, but the plan was for a series of meet ups around Kingston Seymour....in the hope that we will 'see more' than in Bristol....you see what I did there... :D

Anyway, if it comes to anything I can let you know. There's a few others that have expressed an interest, so it may work yet.

If you PM me that will remind me to keep you posted.

Clear skies

Michael

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Don't know why Somerset should be so difficult. It's bigger than many counties in the Midlands and south east and probably has poorer road links, but it's hardly that much different in size from, say, Lancashire and far smaller than Devon or Yorkshire, say. I think some other organisations have the same sort of problem.

Perhaps it's having very few large centres of population, so there's no significant core group to get things rolling in their area? From postings on SGL I can only think of three other people I know would be within a ten mile radius of me, for instance.

James

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I'd be up for a meet sometime.

The Quantocks were mentioned in the National Trust's list of UK dark sites which would make it a very convenient location for me and possibly a few others here, but would probably involve too much driving for many to make it a viable option.

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I've done a fell race in the quantocks and I recall a great little pub off the main road at the base of the course...and there was a playing field if I recall correctly...that could be ideal.

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I am from Merriott, near to Yeovil but I break out over the border to Devon for my dark site. Norman Lockyer Observatory in Sidmouth, it may be a bit of a trek but well worth it for the facilities, dark sky and a great bunch of people.

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Bristol to Cheddar isn't far and I reckon there could be some super skies down there as the mendips create a great barrier. I'm itching for another meet up already...even if it's just a visual get together followed by a pie and a pint. Maybe we should start to throw some dates about and just go for it.

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I'm still up for this. I reckon it needs to be somewhere that is within an hours drive for the participants or where we can pitch a tent / caravan to do an overnight.

It might be easier when the clocks go back again and we have more darkness to play with.

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I'm near Wellington and would definately be up for a meet

As Davy999 has already said the NLO is great - nice and dark with every facility you'll ever need - is too far for you chaps from NS? I'd be happy to travel north if it id

Steve

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This has all the makings of a cunning plan. I'm in.

Edit: The Cheddar suggestion, that is. Sidmouth or Quantocks/Exmoor would require an overnight for us NS/Mendip dwellers so would need a bit of "planning". Cheddar would be a bit more "grab 'n' go" and might enable a drive home in the wee hours...

For those near the Quantocks/Exmoor - what are conditions like on the coast side of the hills? I recall staying at Kilve Court a long time ago - tents have been replaced by cabins etc now - not sure how much use it gets during the winter - SCC might be amenable to letting a few astroholics loose there? (and there's always the pub opposite the end of the drive...:icon_eek:)

Edited by Mak One
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  • 1 year later...

Hi Guys i'm new to the forum been stargazing for a few years now, I found this when searching for starparties, i cannot believe being a dark site that we do not have one!

I'm getting bored of stargazing on my own or being the only one blabbing on to friends that have that glazed over look of boredom as I explain what everything is over and over. :D

I have also spoken to Kieron from SCS Astro. I live practically next door to the shop! He did mention to me attempting to put together an event but it fell through due to lack of interest.:( Perhaps its because he didn't use the forums!

However i'm sure if we were to get it together he would be interested in coming (be stupid not to really!) as its a good sales opportunity.

Anyway, i know of a great campsite a stones throw away from Dunkery Beacon (mentioned many times in BBC Sky at Night) in a place called Horner, Nr west luccombe, porlock (EXMOOR) in the spring the place is dead! It allows open campfires NR the river on site and boasts some sweet darkness... its tents and small camper vans only(transporter sized), just because its a hairy drive down into the valley to get to it. The campsites called Pool Bridge Campsite. So i thought this would help those in Cheddar area for a place to stay.

I travel to Dunkery regularly, for me its the best viewing site around and its 45 mins from my house in Wellington.

Star Party Location? - Google Maps

I know its a year since the last post but what do you all think?

Ryan

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There are a small but growing number of us out this way (see my posting http://stargazerslounge.com/astro-lounge/177764-sgl-members-around-taunton.html), but given the low population density to start with I guess it's hardly surprising that we're fewer and further between.

I drop into SCS once in a while. In fact I must give them a call to see if they've got my dob-building book in yet.

James

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Hi James, yes i would agree on population density and i think due to the economic climate around somerset for 18-25's, newcomers are spooked by the initial cost to set up - lots of mates want to - their just put off when i tell them how much it can cost. I have said tho its not about having the best equipment.

Mind you, i did go to a viewing event once and it did seem that some of the people i met were more interested in telling me the size of their wallet than actually showing an interest in Astronomy. :(

Also i think there are many people like me who have been closet astronomers. Mainly because its a bit nerve wracking getting out on your own to events - and simply finding the time! A shame really as we do have great dark sights.

living nr Wivey have u been to any of the local clubs Bridgy or CADAS? any good recommended sites to do a nights observing that are a bit closer than dunkery, light pollution from welly/taunton is a bit of a pain.

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I've not been to Bridgewater or CADAS, no. I work for myself, have two young children and a money-pit of a house, so time to actually get organised and go out for an evening is a distant memory these days.

The main positive from the point of view of astronomy is that I do live pretty much in the middle of nowhere, so I only have to step outside the door for dark skies. If your drive out to Exmoor takes you on the B3188 out of Wivey towards Watchet then I'm out that way, a few hundred yards off the road.

James

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  • 3 years later...

Hi  as im new to astronomy I have just read this post

I live in Weston-s-mare and wondered

as it’s a few years

on now did anything ever come of this??

 

Thanks

Karl

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This is a very old post.

The nearest astro soc to you is Bristol AS. Very active in and out of the clubhouse.  Look them up on bristolastrosoc.org. I'm in Highbridge and go there most Fridays.

There are also groups in Bridgwater, Sowy (Somerset Levels Stargazers) and Wells and Mendip.

Nigel

 

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