STARGAZERS across Huddersfield will be looking to the heavens in 2011.
Many are expected to take part in a major astronomy event – backed by a pioneering TV series and open days at observatories.
Members of Huddersfield Astronomical & Philosophical Society are hosting one of the open days at their Crosland Hill observatory.
It will be open on January 14 from 7.30pm to 9pm.
If the sky is clear, the crescent moon, Jupiter and a selection of bright Messier objects – first recorded in 1771 – will be observed though the society’s main observatory telescope and portable telescopes will be available as well.
If the sky is not clear, there will be a demonstration of the observatory and telescope facilities along with a planetarium show, meteorite samples, star charts available and a question-and-answer session.
The sessions are timed to follow a three-part series which kicks off on BBC2 on Monday evening.
Prof Brian Cox and comedian Dara O’Briain are hosting the series which is aimed at introducing the world of astronomy to beginners.
A BBC spokesman said: “If you have ever looked up at the night sky and thought, ‘What exactly am I looking at?’, then we might be able to help.
“We have teamed up with astronomy experts across the county for a series of stargazing events which aim to unravel some of the mysteries of the stars.
“Stargazing Live runs in early January, timed to coincide with a number of major astronomical events.
“The period will see a partial eclipse of the sun, a major meteorite shower and the close conjunction of Jupiter and Uranus.”
Observatories, astronomical societies, planetariums, universities and national parks across the UK are running their own events for Stargazing Live.
David Hamper, a spokesman for the Huddersfield Society, said: “We will be open whatever the weather, barring a blizzard.
“It is part of the BBC series.
“There are some steep steps to climb to access the main observatory telescope and these may be unsuitable for anyone who is not able to climb stairs.
“But a portable telescope will be provided, at ground level for additional viewing.
“The observatory is not heated and can be very cold so people should come wrapped up for Arctic conditions – hat, gloves, scarf and good footwear.”