Children Add Colour To Stargazing Live Project

Kedleston Road campus 504x257 Children Add Colour To Stargazing Live Project

Date posted: 10 December 2012

Children employed their star artistic skills to add colour to a BBC Stargazing Live project at the University of Derby.

A 20ft long rotating telescope - a working recreation of one designed by celebrated 18th Century astronomer Sir Frederick William Herschel (1738-1822), discoverer of the planet Uranus - is currently being built at the University of Derby's Markeaton Street site in the city.

It will feature in the next series of BBC's hugely popular programme Stargazing Live, in January. University students are assisting with the project.

Around 20 children from Markeaton Primary School of Derby also lent a hand; braving the cold to decorate the telescope's concrete base with painted moons, stars and planets. Illustration degree students helped them with the designs.

Jane Taylor, Deputy Head at Markeaton Primary School, said: "The children split the base into four themed areas for each main point of the compass; painting them with images such as comets, planets, and things about space and the future."

Euan, ten, one of the pupils taking part, added: "We've been painting the North bit. It's got Uranus on it because Herschel found that and its moons."

Sophie Dolman, 20, a second year student on the University's BA (Hons) Illustration degree course, said: "We've been working with the children on the artwork. They're all really enthusiastic about it."

Derby and District Astronomical Society, Derby Museums, consultants from University College London and Nottingham scaffolding students are also assisting with the project; which is a collaboration between BBC Learning, Stargazing Live and the Open University.

Stargazing Live - again hosted by Professor Brian Cox and Dara O' Briain - will be broadcast on BBC Two on the three consecutive nights of January 8, 9 and 10.

For information about Stargazing Live public events and information packs go to website

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