Star Date (Part One)

Star Date (Part One)

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Armagh, Armagh Observatory and Planetarium




13 November 1990


25min 27sec







Digitised as part of the UTV Archive Partnership Project (ITV, Northern Ireland Screen and PRONI)


Department for Communities, ITV, UTV Archive

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An Observatory was founded in Armagh in 1790, by Archbishop Robinson, the Primate of Ireland. It was the second such building to be established in Ireland; (the first was Dunsink Observatory near Dublin). It is the oldest scientific institution in Northern Ireland.

In the 1950's and 60's, as both the USA and USSR competed with each other in launching satellites and space probes, interest in astronomy by the general public rose rapidly. Within just two decades even space travel by man moved from the realm of fantasy to reality. The great rise in the public conciousness of the universe that followed lead to many requests for visits to the Observatory. However, the Observatory, as a research institution, was not equipped for this influx and in 1964 it was agreed that a Planetarium should be built in Armagh which would cater for public education in astronomy. The first Director was Patrick Moore the famous broadcaster and TV personality.

This programme opens in 1990, with an event marking the 200 year anniversary of the founding of the Observatory. It traces the origins and history of the Observatory over the course of those two centuries and the contemporary workings of the Planetarium.


Digitised as part of the UTV Archive Partnership Project (ITV, Northern Ireland Screen and PRONI)

Sound Recordist: Jim McGirr

Production Assistants: Felicity Pierce, Valerie Croft, Liz Stewart 

Graphic Designer: Michael Williams

Stills: Kenneth McNally

Post Production: Mark Davey, Colin Somerville

Cameraman: David Scott 

Editor: Rob Sellex

Executive Producer: Andy Crockart

Producer: Janthia Duncan 



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