We are a charitable organisation with a mission to encourage a popular interest in astronomy and related matters. To this end we open our twice monthly meetings to the public for free and also open our observatory for the public whenever it is clear on a Saturday night.
But we appreciate that some groups might want to visit us at other times. We offer visits to groups of children or adults by prior arrangement, usually during the week.
This includes visits from schools and from scouts or guides (and we can tailor these visits to suit scouting astronomy badge requirements). Groups of adults are also very welcome.
The normal programme for a visit would be for attendees to be given a short introduction to astronomy, probably based on the sort of observations we can make from our observatory. We can also cover astronomical topics in the news. Then we would show attendees around out observatory, including our large dome which houses our Paul Stenning telescope (a 6" apochromatic refractor). If it is clear we allow participants to look through this telescope but please note that we still go ahead with the visit even if the weather is poor. Also, if it is clear, we would point out some of the constellations and other objects that can be seen in the sky with the naked eye.
The purpose of the group visit is to bring an awareness of astronomy, space science and technology to youth and adult groups in a language that they will understand. We normally allow an hour to 1 ¼ hours for a visit. If you have a special requirement please contact us and we will see if we can accommodate it.
We do not charge members an annual membership subscription. All the bimonthly meetings are free to the members and the visitors alike and we don’t charge the public who visit on Saturdays (though we do encourage voluntary donations). However we do ask for a donation of £3 per visitor for group visits (excludes group leaders). We can manage groups up to about 20 and we expect a minimum take-up of ten paying visitors. Croydon Astronomical Society can arrange visits to our observatory for groups.
For groups of children we need at least two group leaders as we have a rule that our volunteers should never be left alone with children, even in a group. However you may be reassured to know that most of our regular presenters have an enhanced DBS check organized through the STEM Ambassador Programme.
Please see our page about our observatory for details and note that we do not have parking available on site, nor do we have toilets.
Please use the form below if you would like to discuss your requirements.