Public Talks

Monthly Talks on Astronomical Topics of Interest

Monthly Public Talks

Our popular monthly talks are for members and the public to learn about some aspects of astronomy. These talks are aimed at ‘middle of the road’ level so the talk will appeal to members of the public with no prior knowledge, newcomers as well as those who have been interested in the subject for a number of years.

Topics from imaging the night sky, through to Cosmology, we invite speakers from all over the UK and the World.

We make a small charge on the door of £3.00 to cover our expenses. Unless otherwise stated, there is no need to book, simply turn up on the evening.

Our local venue:

Clanfield Memorial Hall,
South Lane,

If you wish to view this location on MultiMap please click here

All talks start at 7:45pm unless otherwise stated

Friday, 17th April 2020

Manufacturing of Launchers, Spacecraft and Satellites - How materials survive in Space

A talk by Andrew Norman

Cost: £3 for non-members

This talk has been cancelled due to COVID-19 

Our speaker tonight, Andrew Norman, is coming to us from ESA!!

Details of his talk will be updated when he gets back from the US in early March - he's there in February to see the launch of ESA's Solar Orbiter (lucky guy!)

Picture Credit : ESA

Friday, 15th May 2020

Great Comets and Great disappointments

A talk by Nick James

Cost: £3 for non-members

This lecture has been cancelled due to COVID-19

Comets are occasional ghostly visitors to our skies and they hold the key to our understanding of the conditions in the early Solar System. They are fascinating objects to observe but their behaviour is very difficult to predict. The very best comets can be spectacular. This talk will cover what makes a comet "Great" and give some examples through history.

Nick will also cover those cases where comets have not lived up to their early hype and explain why disappointment is more common these days than it was.

 Nick has been interested in astronomy for as long as he can remember, certainly since the age of 8. He has been a member of the British Astronomical Association since he was 12 and is now the Director of its Comet Section (

Nick is also Assistant Editor of The Astronomer Magazine.
He has written many articles for magazines and books, and co-authored "Observing Comets" which was published in 2003 as part of Sir Patrick Moore’s Practical Astronomy series.

Professionally, Nick is an engineer in the space industry, leading a team responsible for implementing highly sensitive and accurate systems for receiving and processing signals from deep-space spacecraft. He is also a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) ambassador and is keen to encourage more young people to consider science and
engineering as a career.

All of this keeps him pretty busy but he still finds time to travel extensively to see astronomical phenomena. He is an eclipse chaser, having seen 14 total solar eclipses and has travelled to see the Northern Lights, comets and other interesting objects under dark skies. 

PLEASE NOTE: This talk will be on the THIRD FRIDAY in May, to avoid the Bank Holiday.


Friday, 12th June 2020

TBA: HOYS / Star Formation

A talk by Dr Dirk Froebrich

Cost: £3 for non-members

This lecture has been cancelled due to COVID-19

A repeat visit from Dirk Froebrich (last here in May, 2016), giving us an update on his work.

More details of this talk will be added later.