The Papworth Astronomy Club holds monthly meetings in Papworth Everard in the North Hall of Papworth Village Hall (Ermine Street South, Papworth Everard, Cambridge CB23 3RD, 52.2484646° N 0.1166734° W, or see map below). Meetings are usually on the first Wednesday of the month at 7.30pm, and feature a mixture of invited speakers, equipment demonstrations and viewing sessions. Everyone is welcome (you don’t have to be a member to attend) and the meeting room is accessible to wheelchairs. Refreshments are provided for a small fee.

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Upcoming Meetings and Events

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, no in-person meetings or events are currently scheduled.

Upcoming virtual meetings (on Zoom) will be announced as they are organised. Other organisations hosting online space talks include GoSpaceWatch and the Cambridge Astronomical Association, as well as other local astronomical associations such as Letchworth, Ely, and Sandy.

Past Meetings


  • 13th January: Online New Year’s get-together
  • 11th March: John I Davies (Initiative & Institute for Interstellar Studies) – 1I/’Oumuamua and 2I/Borisov, the unexpected and the half-expected interstellar visitors
    • This was a virtual meeting run via Zoom; the presentation can be downloaded from here.


  • 8th January: Paul Beskeen – Narrowband Imaging
  • 5th February: Ed Zanders – a report from European AstroFest 2020
  • 4th March: Keith Tritton – What’s Up With Betelgeuse?
  • 1st April: Talk postponed in light of ongoing COVID-19 pandemic
  • 8th July: John I Davies (i4is) – Interstellar Probes: How can we do it?
    • This was a virtual meeting run via Zoom; the presentation can be downloaded from here.


  • 9th January: Rob Sandford – Building the ExoMars Rover
  • 6th February: Dr Emma Woodfield (British Antarctic Survey) – Planetary Space Weather
  • 6th March: Cancelled
  • 3rd April: Dr Colin DeGraf (Institute of Astronomy) – The First Massive Black Hole
  • 1st May: Keith Tritton (Papworth Astronomy Club) – A Wondrous Discovery: how the mystery of the missing gold was solved by a kilonova
  • 7th August: Twenty-third annual summer picnic
  • 4th September: Paul Fellows (Cambridge Astronomical Association): Hawking’s Black Holes and the Edge of Physics
  • Tuesday 1st October: Keith Tritton (Papworth Astronomy Club) – Hubble Trouble: Why Astronomers Can’t Agree How Fast the Universe Is Expanding
  • 6th November: Dr Dave Green (Cavendish Labs) – Cygnus X-3: A High Mass X-ray Binary
  • 4th December: Jonathan Clough (Cambridge Astronomical Association) – The Solar System


  • 10th January: Ed Zanders – “Astronomy 2030”
  • 7th February: Phil Butcher (Papworth Astronomy Club) – Observing in a Warm Climate
  • 7th March: Dr Nick Walton – Gaia: Imaging the Milky Way
  • 4th April: Dr Matt Bothwell – “Big Bangs to Big Rips: a History of 20th Century Cosmology”
  • 2nd May: John McEvoy – “Asteroids, comets and meteorites”
  • 5th September: Simon Kidd – Asteroid Occultations
  • 3rd October: Bob Baldwin (Airbus, and Letchworth Astronomy Society) – “Spacecraft in Astronomy”
  • 7th November: John McEvoy (Northampton) – The outer planets
  • 5th December: Dr Patricia Fara – “Robert Hooke’s ‘Micrographia’”


  • 4th January: Peter Sandford – “Denmark: Astronomy and Space”
  • 1st February: Outreach evening with Papworth Cub Scouts
  • 1st March: Dave Roberts (St Neots Astronomical Association) – the Hubble Space Telescope
  • 5th April: Dr Paul Murdin (Cambridge University) – “Landscapes of the Planets”
  • 3rd May: Dr Keith Tritton – “Mapping the Milky Way with Gaia”
  • 2nd August: Twenty-first annual summer picnic, in the Vintner Room.
  • 6th September: Paul Fellowes – “From the Pendulum to Dark Matter”
  • 4th October: Ryan MacDonald – “The Inferno World with Titanium Skies”
  • 1st November: Douglas Boubert – “Are the fastest stars in the Milky Way on the run from another galaxy?”
  • 6th December: Keith Tritton – “Mapping the Milky Way with Gaia”


  • 6th January: Dr Keith Tritton – “The La Palma Site Testers”
  • 3rd February: Doug Millard (Science Museum) – Russian Space Exploration
  • 2nd March: John Richer (Cavendish Laboratory) – Exploring the Cold Universe at High Resolution: First Images From the Atacama Large Millimetre Array
  • 6th April: Charles Smith (University of Hertfordshire) – Asteroids and the Jovian System
  • 4th May: Keith Hawkins (Institute of Astronomy) – Galactic Archaeology
  • 3rd August: Twentieth annual summer picnic, in the Vintner Room.
  • 7th September: Paul Fellows (CAA) – Planets that Never Were
  • 5th October: Jerry Workman FRAS – an update on the Mars Curiosity mission
  • 2nd November: Rob Sandford – “Mars Flyby Missions: Apollo 8 for Mars”
  • 7th December: Observing evening led by Dave Roberts


  • 7th January: Dr Steven Gratton – “Learning about our Universe with new results from the Planck satellite”
  • 4th February: Observing evening led by Dave Roberts. There will be an alternative presentation indoors if the weather is poor.
  • 4th March: Peter Townsend (Peterborough Astronomical Society) – “The Curiosity Rover” (with 3D glasses for everyone!).
  • 1st April: Mark Hurn (Institute of Astronomy) – “Supernova: Queens of the Sky” (Gordon Carter Memorial Lecture)
  • 6th May: Professor Andy Fabian OBE – “Observing Black Holes”
  • 5th August: Nineteenth annual summer picnic, in the Vintner Room.
  • 2nd September: Dr Sonali Shukla (Institute of Astronomy) – “Discovering Dwarf Planets”
  • 7th October: Dr Simon Mitton – “The Fireworks Universe of Georges Lemaître”
  • 4th November: Observing evening led by Dave Roberts
  • 2nd December: Dr Sergey Koposov (Institute of Astronomy) – “The Milky Way and its neighbours”


  • 8th January: Ed Zanders — “A Northern Sky Watcher’s View of the Southern Stars”
  • 5th February: Professor Tom Marsh (Warwick University) — “White dwarfs, Supernovae and Gravitational Waves”
  • 2nd April: Rob Sandford (Warwick University) — “The Second Space Race?”
  • 7th May: Dr Robin Catchpole (Institute of Astronomy) — “Are We Alone? A talk about if and why we may be the only observers of our universe”
  • 6th August: Eighteenth annual summer picnic
  • 3rd September: Dr Patricia Fara (University of Cambridge) — “Newton and Newtonianism”
  • 1st October: Neil Parker — “Aurora Flights”
  • 5th November: Dr Deborah Sjacki: “Computer Simulation of Galaxy Formation”
  • 11th December (20th Anniversary Celebration Meeting): Professor Malcolm Longair (Cavendish Laboratory) — “Fundamental Physics, Astronomy and Cosmology”


  • 2nd January: Nik Szymanek — “Photographing the Night Sky”
  • 5th February: Dave Roberts — “Observing Basics”
  • 6th March: Paul Hewett (Institute of Astronomy) — “The search for the highest redshift quasars”
  • 3rd April: Andreas Schroeer — “Coordinates… or Captain Jack and the Lost Crown Jewel”
  • 1st May: Professor John Zarnecki (Open University) — “Landing on a Comet”
  • 7th August: Seventeenth annual summer picnic
  • 4th September: Dave Green (Cambridge University) — “Observing the radio universe”
  • 2nd October: Dr Mike Leggett FRAS — “Astronomy in the Ancient World”
  • 6th November: Observing evening led by Dave Roberts
  • 4th December: Sheridan Williams FRAS (Computing Section, BAA) — “The Mechanics of Eclipses”






  • 9th January: Stephen Wilkins (Institute of Astronomy) — “The Formation Of Stars And Galaxies: Measuring The Rate Of Star Formation Over The Last 100 Billion Years”
  • 6th February: Andy Green (Stardome) — “To Infinity And Beyond”
  • 5th March: Michael Czajkowski (Open University) — “Icy Worlds”
  • 2nd April: Carl Warren (Astrium Ltd) — “LISA Pathfinder”
  • 7th May: Club Members discuss the Club’s recent Faulkes Telescope observing session
  • 31st May: Trip To Greenwich
  • 6th August: Twelfth annual summer picnic
  • 3rd September: Nobel Laureate Antony Hewish (Cavendish Laboratory) — “Pulsars And General Relativity”
  • 1st October: Neil Trentham (Institute of Astronomy) — “Gamma Ray Bursts And Dark Energy – Fundamental Physics In Cosmology”
  • 5th November: Stephen Reed (Dept of Earth Sciences, University of Cambridge) — “Meteorites, Messengers From Space”
  • 3rd December: Observing evening


  • 10th January: Carolin Crawford (Institute of Astronomy) — “Hubble Space Telescope Images Of Nebulae”
  • 7th February: Mark Hurn (Institute of Astronomy) — “Failed To Find Neptune”
  • 7th March: Observing evening led by Ed Zanders
  • 4th April: Tom Boles (Coddenham Suffolk) — “Discovering Supernovae – Methods, Motivation and Rewards”
  • 2nd May: Talks From Club Members – Show And Tell!
  • 24th July: Observing With The Faulkes Telescope at Papworth Library
  • 1st August: Eleventh annual summer picnic
  • 5th September: Keith Tritton (Club member) — “The Instruments of Darkness Tell Truths”
  • 3rd October: Jerry Workman (Loughton Astronomical Society) — “Mars Express”
  • 7th November: Observing evening
  • 23rd November: AstroQuiz – Vinter Room
  • 5th December: David Roberts (Club member) — “Astronomy My Way”


  • 4th January: Dave Early — “Filming The Moon And Stars”
  • 1st February: Roger O’Brien (University of Hertfordshire) — “Cosmology In The Corridor. You Can Be A Supercluster If You Try!”
  • 1st March: Simon Green (Open University) — “NASA’s Stardust Mission”
  • 5th April: Alistair Scott (Astrium) — “Astrium And Their Work”
  • 3rd May: Andy Green (Stardome) — “Apollo Missions To The Moon”
  • 3rd June:Observing With The Faulkes Telescope at Papworth Library
  • 2nd August: Tenth annual summer picnic
  • 6th September: Neil Parker (Green Witch) — “The 2006 Eclipse”
  • 4th October: Cathie Clarke (Institute of Astronomy) — “Recent Results On Star And Planet Formation”
  • 1st November: Lisa Jardine-Wright (Cavendish Laboratory) and Robin Catchpole (Institute of Astronomy) — “Making A Comet For All Saints Day”
  • 10th November: AstroQuiz in Papworth
  • 18th November: Visit To Astrium, Stevenage
  • 6th December: Observing evening led by Ed Zanders


  • 5th January: Keith Tritton — “How Old Is The Universe”
  • 2nd February: Mike Stephens — “Einstein and Relativity: 100 Years In A Strange Universe”
  • 2nd March: Open Evening at Pendragon Primary School
  • 6th April: Nobel Laureate Antony Hewish — “The White Hot Universe”
  • 4th May: Alan Lawrie — “Secrets of Saturn V”
  • 3rd August: Ninth annual summer picnic
  • 7th September: Nick Achillios (Imperial College) — “Magnetic Observations of Saturn During The Insertion Orbit of Cassini”
  • 5th October: Talks from Club Members
  • 2nd November: Ed Zanders and Lee Sproats — “The Sky Tonight”
  • 4th March: Peter Howell (Cambridge Astronomical Association) — “Whistlers: Listening To The Earth’s Natural Radio Signals”


  • 7th January: Robin Catchpole (Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge) — “From the Solar System To The Edge Of The Observable Universe”
  • 4th February : David Whitehouse (BBC) — “The Moon: A Biography”
  • 3rd March: Monica Grady (Natural History Museum) — “Voyage In Space And Time”
  • 7th April: Nik Szymanek (University of Hertfordshire) — “Astronomical Imaging From Hawaii”
  • 5th May: Jonathan Shanklin (British Antarctic Survey) — “An Astronomer In Antarctica”
  • 5th August : 10th Anniversary Dinner at The Conservatory
  • 1st September: Derek McNally (ex UCL) — “Between The Stars”
  • 6th October: Observing evening led by Dave Eagle (Bedford Astronomy Club)
  • 3rd November: Neil Parker (Green Witch) — “Arizona Sky Village”
  • 1st December: Dr Sarah Symons (Leicester University) — “Ancient Egyptian Astronomy”


  • 8th January: Kevin Marshall — “From Technology To The Stars – And The Universe”
  • 5th February: Peter Howell — “The Sky Tonight”
  • 5th March: Mark Hurn (Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge) — “The Story of Star Names”
  • 2nd April: Nik Szymanek (University of Hertfordshire) — “Astronomical Imaging From La Parma”
  • 7th May: Lisa Wright — “Painting by numbers (galaxy formation)”
  • 6th August: Eighth annual summer picnic
  • 3rd September: Mike Stephens (Club member) — “Visitors From Earth”
  • 19th September: Astroquiz
  • 1st October: Stephen Smartt (Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge) — “Supernova Studies With The Hubble Space Telescope”
  • 5th November: Ed Zanders (Club member) — “From Eyes To Silicon Chips – A History Of Astronomical Imaging”
  • 3rd December: Bob Argyle (Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge) — “Visual Double Stars And How To Observe Them”


  • 9th January: Derek Jones (Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge) — “Longitude”
  • 6th February: Peter Howell and Peter Ingram (CAA) — “The Sky Tonight”
  • 6th March: Club Open Evening: Robot building with OMEN
  • 3rd April: Talks from club members:
    • Fred Bastable — “The Search For Planet X”
    • Mike Stevens — “Where To Park In The Solar System”
    • Gordon Carter — “Time”
    • Janine Eisegood — “Pennies From Heaven – Gold”
    • Ed Zanders — “The Kingston Pastures Observatory”
    • Janet Vialls — “Messier Objects”
    • Georgio Rozario — “The Leviathan of Parsons Town”
  • 1st May: Linton Guise (Bedford Astronomical Society) — “Charles Piazzi Smyth”
  • 7th August: Seventh annual summer picnic
  • 4th September: Jerry Workman (Astronomical Society of Haringey) — “The Galileo Mission To Jupiter”
  • 2nd October: Peter Howell and Peter Ingram (CAA) — “The Sky Tonight”
  • 6th November: Monica Grady (Natural History Museum) — “Strangers From Space”
  • 4th December: Peter Howell and Peter Ingram (CAA) — “The Sky Tonight”


  • 3rd January:Talks from Club Members
  • 7th February: Peter Howell and Peter Ingram (CAA) — Demonstration Evening
  • 7th March: Club open evening: Prof. Colin Pillinger (Open University) — “The Beagle 2 Project”
  • 4th April: Mike Leggett (Astronomy Lecturer and Writer) — “Neptune And The Outer Solar System”
  • 2nd May: Gareth Lloyd — “Stellarsphere”
  • 15th August: Sixth annual summer picnic
  • 5th September: Alex Barnett (National Space Centre) — “The National Space Centre”
  • 3rd October: Peter Howell and Peter Ingram (CAA) — “The Sky Tonight”
  • 12th October: AstroQuiz (Sawtry Methodist Church Hall)
  • 7th November: Bob Fosbury (Space Telescope Coordinating Facility) — “The Next Generation Space Telescope And The Epoch Of Galaxy Formation”
  • 5th December: Peter Howell and Peter Ingram (CAA) — “The Sky Tonight”


  • 5th January: Dr Andy Robinson (University of Hertfordshire) — “Quasars: Monsters Of Deep Space”
  • 2nd February: Dave Eagle (Bedford Astronomy Club) — “The Sky Tonight”
  • 1st March: Club Open Evening
  • 5th April: Neil Parker (Green Witch) — “Cassegrains and Canaries”
  • 3rd May: Dr Ann Bonell (Leicester Astronomical Society) — “Ladies Of The Night”
  • June: Astronomy Quiz
  • 2nd August: Fifth annual summer picnic
  • 6th September: Philip Dembo (Mars Society UK) — “A View Of The Universe”
  • 4th October: Peter Howell (Cambridge Astronomical Association) — Demonstration Evening
  • 13th October: Astronomy Quiz (Sawtry Methodist Church Hall)
  • 1st November: Paul Murdin (British National Space Centre) — “Black Holes – An Update From Space”


  • 1st January: Dr Keith Tritton (Club member) — “The Solar System”
  • 3rd February: Dave Eagle (Bedford Astronomy Club) — “Introduction To The Night Sky – 2”
  • 3rd March:The first Club Open Evening, with Astronomy Roadshow
  • 7th April: Dave Eagle (Bedford Astronomy Club) — “Introduction To The Night Sky – 3”
  • 5th May: Dr Barrie Jones (Open University) — “Life In The Universe”
  • 1st June: Visit to The Mullard Radio Observatory, at Lord’s Bridge
  • 2nd June: Astronomy Roadshow—Visit of the Mobile Planetarium
  • 4th June: Annual AstroQuiz (Institute of Astronomy)
  • 4th August:Fourth annual summer picnic
  • 11th August: Visit to the CAA solar eclipse meeting
  • 1st September: Air Commodore Colin Foale — “How To Survive Being The Father Of An Astronaut”
  • 6th October: Dave Eagle (Bedford Astronomy Club) — “Introduction To The Night Sky – 4”
  • 3rd November: Nobel Laureate Prof. Antony Hewish (Cambridge University) — “The Pulsar Story”
  • 1st December: Dave Eagle (Bedford Astronomy Club) — “The Sky Tonight”


  • 21st January: Dr David Malin (Anglo/Australian Observatory) — “A View Of The Universe”
  • 4th March: Night sky session
  • 1st April: Stan Trafford (Cambridge Astronomical Association) — “The Night Sky And Your Camera”
  • 6th May: Night sky session
  • 3rd June: Peter Ingram and Brian Lister (CAA) — “Spectroscopy: Is A Spectrum More Than A Squiggly Line?”
  • 5th August: Third annual summer picnic
  • 2nd September: Gordon Carter (Club member) — “40 Years of NASA”
  • 7th October: Night sky session
  • 11th November: Dr Jasper Wall (Ex Director RGO)
  • 2nd December: Dave Eagle (Bedford Astronomy Club) — “Introduction To The Night Sky”


  • 1st January: Night sky session
  • 5th February: Janet Vialls (Club member) — “Looking Back In Time”
  • 5th March: Visit to the London Planetarium
  • 2nd April: Hale-Bopp observing session
  • 7th May: Night sky session
  • 4th June: Dr Paul Hewett (Cambridge Institute of Astronomy) — “Galaxies, The Expanding Universe And Dark Matter”
  • 6th August: The second annual summer picnic
  • 3rd September: Night sky session
  • 1st October: Dr David Whitehouse (BBC) — “Astronomy In The News”
  • 5th November: Night sky session
  • 3rd December: Dr Jonathan Shanklin (British Astronomical Association) — “Astronomy From The Antarctic”


  • 3rd January: Night sky session
  • 7th February: Gordon Carter (Club member) — “JFK and Apollo”
  • 6th March: Night sky session
  • 3rd April: Dr Peter Andrews (Ex RGO) — “Things That Go Bump In The Night”
  • 1st May: Night sky session
  • 5th June: Open Forum (Debate) — “Life in the Universe”
  • 7th August: The first annual summer picnic
  • 4th September: Night sky session
  • 2nd October: Teresa Grafton (London Planetarium) — “The London Planetarium: Opening The Dome”
  • 6th November: Night sky session
  • 2nd February: Dr Robin Catchpole (Ex RGO) — “The Hubble Space Telescope”


  • 4th January: Night sky session
  • 2nd February: Dr Robin Catchpole (Ex RGO) — “Exploding Stars”
  • March: Visit to the Royal Greenwich Observatory
  • 5th April: Brian Lister (Cambridge Astronomical Association) — “Dinosaurs, Frankenstein and Stiff Snakes”
  • 3rd May: Night sky session
  • 7th June: Dr Margaret Penston (Ex RGO) — “Life on Other Planets”
  • 2nd August: George Rozario (club member) — “An Astronomical Tour of Arizona”
  • 6th September: Night sky session
  • 4th October: Brian Lister (Cambridge Astronomical Association) — “Moon Rocks and Meteorites”
  • 2nd November: Night sky session
  • 4th January: Dr Patrick Moore — “The Inner Planets”


  • 7th September: Dave Early — “Sky Photographs”
  • 5th October: Keith Tritton — “The Moon”
  • 2nd November: Night sky session
  • 7th December: Dr Colin Humphreys (Institute of Metallurgy, Cambridge University) — “The Star of Bethlehem”