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The Observatory Science Centre
Herstmonceux
Hailsham
East Sussex
BN27 1RN
Tel: 01323 832731
Fax: 01323 832741

Email Us

Exclusive Books

Science Projects Publishing presents these exclusive publications.
Please note that although other distributors may list these books, they will order from us and then post on to you.

The Isaac Newton Telescope - at Herstmonceux and on La Palma

At the end of the second World War professional astronomy in Britain was in the doldrums.  A remedy was proposed in the form of a big new telescope, to be named after the country's greatest scientist.  But years of indecision and frustration followed, and not until 1968 was the Isaac Newton Telescope -fifth largest in the world- fully open for business at its Sussex site.  Just eleven years later it closed down, defeated by the British climate.  The telescope was updated and improved, and reinstalled at a much better location in the Canary Islands, where it has operated successfully for a quarter of a century.


This book is a history of the Isaac Newton Telescope, from the casting in 1936 of what would eventually become its main mirror in Sussex, to its continuing exploration of Canarian skies in the twenty-first century.  It is a book about large telescopes and how they work, about the political realities of a 'big science' project, and about the remarkable progress of astronomy over forty years, in which the Isaac Newton telescope has played, and is still playing, a part.

148 pages, paperback, 104 colour and black/white illustrations.
By Anthony Wilson.
Science Projects Publishing 2010.  ISBN 978 0 9512394 2 1

Exclusively available from The Observatory Science Centre shop or via mail order.
Cost £13 (including p & p)
Please make cheques payable to 'Science Projects Ltd' and send to

The Observatory Science Centre
Herstmonceux
East Sussex
BN27 1RN

Astronomers at Herstmonceux

For forty years, Herstmonceux in Sussex was the home of one of the world's great scientific instiutions, the Royal Greenwich Observatory.  More than 200 people worked there and lived in the local community.

'In their own words' this book recaptures the flavour of life at The Observatory, recorded in the personal recollections of people who spent much of their working lives there.  It tells of freezing nights at the telescopes of the Equatorial Group, of days spent compiling essential tables for the Nautical Almanac before computers were available, and many other aspects of the astronomers' everyday life and work.

It is a lively and engaging record of a unique - and now vanished- way of life and abounds in anecdotes:
Why did one astonomer's trousers catch fire?
Whose observations were interrupted by blood-chilling screams?

68 pages, paperback.  Editor Anthony Wilson.
Science Projects Publishing.  ISBN 978 0 9512394 1 4

Exclusively available from The Observatory Science Centre shop or via mail order.
Cost £7 (including p & p)
Please make cheques payable to 'Science Projects Ltd' and send to

The Observatory Science Centre
Herstmonceux
East Sussex
BN27 1RN


Guidebook

This Guidebook has an exclusive endorsement by Sir Patrick Moore.
It features visitor information and a large site map to guide you around The Centre during your visit: plus historical and educational information.

-Details of the historic telescopes on site
-Explanation of astronomical terms
-The work of the Herstmonceux astronomers
-The construction of the site in the 1950's
-A concise history of the Royal Observatory
-Hands-on exploration of the interactive science exhibits
-The Centre today: Astronomy, Education and Special Events.

33 full colour pages all featuring photographs.
Science Projects Publishing 2010

Exclusively available from The Observatory Science Centre shop or via mail order.
Cost £3 (including p & p)
Please make cheques payable to 'Science Projects Ltd' and send to

The Observatory Science Centre
Herstmonceux
East Sussex
BN27 1RN
INT Book Reviews
"An enjoyable read. This book comes warmly recommended." Sir Patrick Moore. Featured in BBC Sky at Night Magazine. "Well written, nicely illustrated and a real bargain at under £11" David Stickland The Observatory magazine August 2010.