A new observatory is to open this weekend at a beauty spot near Glasgow.

The Astronomical Society of Glasgow’s (ASG) Eric Tomney Memorial Observatory will be launched in an all-day public event on Saturday, September 30.

A decade in the making, its location close to Mugdock Country Park’s visitor centre offers a well-known spot not far from the city, but with reasonably dark skies.

The big event will include tours of the observatory and astronomical presentations as well as solar and night-time observations throughout the day, weather permitting.

Glasgow Times:

Dr Andrew Conway FRAS, president of the ASG, said: “This is literally a childhood dream come true for many of us - building a new astronomical observatory.

“It's not officially open yet but many passers-by in the park have stopped to ask us what we were doing as we worked on it, and we answered them with live images of sunspots, solar prominences and, on a few lucky occasions, solar flares.”

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The observatory is the legacy of the society’s former society president, Eric Tomney, who passed away in 2013 and left a bequest for the observatory’s construction for the benefit of the society’s members.

It not only features a 14-inch diameter reflecting telescope for imaging the cosmos in its dome but the ASG has a collection of telescopes suitable for beginners to seasoned astronomers.

Experienced members of the society will work with country park staff to share their expertise through public observing sessions, exclusive society member events, citizen science projects and public educational sessions.

Glasgow Times:

Dr Conway added: “In the winter we can't wait to show them the moon, planets, stars, galaxies and much more through our telescopes.

“We live on a pale blue dot in a vast universe and this new observatory will let more people experience its wonder with their own eyes.”