Royal Holloway, University of London has been chosen to host BBC Two’s hugely popular programme Stargazing Live in the New Year.
The University will be opening its doors to staff, students and the public for a spectacular event on Thursday 9 January from 6pm -9:30pm as part of a nationwide celebration of astronomy.
The event, hosted by comedian and science presenter Helen Arney, is designed to inspire everyone – from the complete beginner to the enthusiastic amateur – to make the most of the night sky. It coincides with the live Stargazing show hosted by Professor Brian Cox and Dara O’Briain.
In a stunning spectacle, a visual representation of the solar system will be created at Royal Holloway’s campus in Egham with nothing but the help of volunteers with torches and a clever piece of technology.
Professor Paul Layzell, Principal of Royal Holloway said: "We are delighted to host BBC Stargazing Live. Our spectacular Founder's building will provide the perfect centerpiece for an evening of activities to help us fully explore the night sky. Our world-renowned physicists will also be on hand to demonstrate their research, which is making great strides in unlocking the secrets of the Universe."
Visitors will also get the chance to see amazing science demos and striking images from the world’s best telescopes. People attending can take part in fun, space-themed activities including the DIY Solar System, as well as having the chance to train like an astronaut, and be an Interplanetary weather reporter.
BBC presenters and professional and amateur astronomers will be on hand to guide people through what they can see in the night sky and give tips on how to get started. There will also be comedy and music to entertain everyone.
Professor Cox says: “This series promises to be bolder and more ambitious than ever. We’ll be looking at everything from the Milky Way and other galaxies to space weather. Everyone can get involved and we hope the audience will join in to explore the wonders of space.”
Entry to the event is free but is ticketed. Tickets are now available, initially until Tuesday 10 December, via the BBC. There are two time slots for tickets which will be drawn at random; entry from 6pm or entry from 7.30pm. The event closes at 9.30pm.