Having welcomed the arrival of an electric powered Dark Skies van at the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB earlier this year, Clwyd West MS Darren was delighted to visit the vehicle this week and enjoy the perfect viewpoint of the local night sky.
Darren met with David Shiels of Denbighshire County Council and Dani Robertson, the Dark Sky Officer for the Prosject Nos Partnership, at Loggerheads Country Park in the Clwydian to discuss their work promoting dark skies in North Wales.
The Prosiect Nos Partnership is an initiative of the Snowdonia National Park, the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley, Anglesey and Pen Llŷn Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and was set up to help create the largest area of protected dark skies in the world!
Speaking afterwards, Darren said:
“Dark skies are important, not just for astronomers, but for biodiversity, the economy, mental health and wellbeing and climate change.
“I’ve been calling for a National Observatory for Wales for sometime and can think of no better location for it than the Clwydian Range in North East Wales. It would be a wonderful national asset in what will be our newest National Park, once the Welsh Government delivers on its commitment to designate the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley as a National Park.
“I was delighted by the arrival earlier in the year of the Dark Skies Van, which Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB staff use to run Dark Skies public events across the local area to give people the opportunity to experience natural night sky.
“As someone who enjoys star gazing and astronomy, I really enjoyed my visit, during which I was able to hold some meteorite, learn more about Welsh constellation names, handle some astronomical binoculars and learn how to use a Dobsonian telescope!”
“A National Observatory in this part of Denbighshire would enable more people to enjoy these spectacular dark skies that we are so fortunate to have in North Wales, and I will continue pushing for one.”