Pupils stargaze the solar eclipse

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12 MARCH 2015NEWS RELEASE No: 16486

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Over 4,500 school pupils in and surrounding the Galloway Forest Dark Sky Park area have been given special glasses to help them watch the total eclipse.

Forestry Commission Scotland organised for 31 schools to be supplied with the solar viewing glasses to boost their learning in astronomy and raise awareness of the Dark Sky Park. 

A total solar eclipse occurs when the moon is aligned and at the correct distance from the earth so that it blocks light from the Sun.

In Scotland, a 98% eclipse is possible which could turn day into dusk. This eclipse, which is rare for the UK, is going to occur on the morning of Friday 20th March.

Keith Muir of Forestry Commission Scotland in Galloway said:

“This is an amazing event and a great opportunity for school children and adults to get more involved with stargazing.

“The total solar eclipse may only be witnessed a few times in a lifetime so we hope to make the most of it with our chosen schools.

“If the weather is favourable then we could see the start of the eclipse around 7.30am, with it reaching its peak at 9.45am. We hope many people join in and watch this solar event.”

Forestry Commission Scotland will be updating its Galloway Forest Dark Sky Park website with advice on watching the solar eclipse.

Zane Gray, deputy Head Teacher at Dalry secondary added:

“The children and teaching staff at the Dalry secondary, Carsphairn and Kells primary schools were delighted to receive the solar glasses. It is a great opportunity for the children to view the solar eclipse safely, in what will be a memorable learning experience for them.”

The Galloway Forest Dark Sky Park is managed by Forestry Commission Scotland. For more information log on to:

Notes to Editors

1. Forestry Commission Scotland is part of the Scottish Government's Environment & Forestry Directorate www.forestry.gov.uk/scotland.

2. For news, events and recreation information log on to: www.facebook.com/enjoyscotlandsforests or https://twitter.com/FCScotlandNews

3. Tha FCS pàirt de Bhuidheann-Stiùiridh Àrainneachd is Coilltearachd aig Riaghaltas na h-Alba; a' riaghladh nan 660,000 heactairean ann an Oighreachd na Coille Nàiseanta, a' dìon, a' cumail smachd air, agus a' leudachadh choilltean gus buannachdan a choileanadh dha coimhearsnachdan, dhan eaconamaidh agus ag obair an aghaidh atharrachadh sa ghnàth-shìde. www.forestry.gov.uk/scotland


e-mail: steve.williams@forestry.gsi.gov.uk