We have arranged a trip to the University of London Observatory, Mill Hill on Saturday 25th April from 8.00pm until 9.30pm.
There are 24 places available and BOOKING IS REQUIRED. The cost of the tour will be around £7.50 per head. Details on the final cost and arrangements to pay will be sent soon.
Although initially established as a University of London facility (still reflected in the name), the Observatory has been exclusively managed by University College London since 1951. It is a hands-on teaching observatory, part of the Astrophysics Group in UCL’s Department of Physics and Astronomy.
The ULO are equipped with five permanently mounted telescopes, two lecture/classrooms, and a specialist astronomy library. They are reasonably easily accessible from the main Bloomsbury campus, ensuring that students have good access to the telescopes. In addition to observing, students are trained in data-reduction techniques, the practical applications of astrophysical theory, and computational astronomy. This training can take place in the context of an undergraduate degree module, a student project, or, for interested members of the public, as part of their higher-education Certificate in Astronomy.
ULO remains active in scientific inquiry, with a strong observational research programme in extrasolar planets. They are in the process of expanding their observing capabilities with the development of unattended (remote & robotic) observing modes, which they hope will culminate in a new large robotic telescope, a project for which funding is currently underway.
University of London Observatory – 553 Watford Way – Mill Hill – London – NW7 2QS. The Observatory is located off the northbound carriageway of the A1 in Mill Hill, North London. Pedestrians on the southbound side of the road must use the under-road subway just north of the Observatory.) There is no on-site visitor parking (other than by prior arrangement for disabled visitors). Unfortunately, the site is not wheelchair-friendly, with gravelled grounds and steep stairways. Disabled visitors should contact ULO well in advance to discuss access requirements. It is easily reached by public transport:
The most convenient way to get to UCLO from central London is by the Thameslink rail service to Mill Hill Broadway (Travelcard zone 4), followed by a 10–15-minute walk to the Observatory. The line has a number of stations in central London, including City Thameslink, Farringdon, and St. Pancras International. Journey times from Farringon and St. Pancras International are about 20 minutes. Oyster cards can be used on this route.
Trains run several times an hour throughout the day; timetables are available through the Thameslink web site.
Another useful resource for journey planning is the National Rail web site or call National Rail Enquiries on 0845 748 4950.
ULO discourage arrival by car; entry to the site from the Watford Way is hazardous (drop-offs even more so), and there is no parking for tour visitors on site. A large, free public car park is located nearby, in Daws Lane (postcode for satnav is NW7 4SL; the subsequent short walk to ULO is via the A1 pedestrian underpass, most easily reached from the alley that runs along the western side of Royal Mail Mill Hill Delivery Office). Parking is also available in the Mill Hill Broadway railway-station car park in Bunn’s Lane (pay & display, but free after 18:30).