SEVEN sites in the island have been recommended for stargazers.
Port Soderick Brooghs, Axnfell Plantation, Smeale Nature Reserve, Niarbyl, The Sound, Fort Island and Sulby Reservoir car park have been designated ‘dark sky discovery sites’ under an international scheme operated by the UK Science and Technology Facilities Council.
NASA astronaut Nicole Stott, whose husband Chris Stott is Manx and a pioneer in the space industry, said: ‘I tried on many occasions to identify the Isle of Man from orbit, but I had great difficulty because it is so dark. I eventually captured an image and it shows how wonderful the night skies in the island are.
‘I had a great time on the Island last year looking at the night sky through a telescope. The Manx skies are fantastic for astronomy - great from both above, on board the International Space Station and from below, on the Island.’
Manx National Heritage will now be working with government, the voluntary sector and the private sector including with the Isle of Man Astronomical Society to ‘maximise opportunities’ from the island’s dark skies status.
Edmund Southworth, director of Manx National Heritage, said: ‘We are delighted that so many sites have been awarded this special status on the Isle of Man. This puts the island firmly on the map as having the largest concentration of dark skies sites in Britain.’
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Weather for Isle of Man
Thursday 23 May 2013
Temperature: 6 C to 10 C
Wind Speed: 33 mph
Wind direction: North west
Temperature: 7 C to 14 C
Wind Speed: 23 mph
Wind direction: North