Winter is a time for enjoying the night's pleasures. The Yorkshire Dales is one of England's darkest areas. On a clear night, we see thousands of stars overhead including The Milky Way. It's a pretty impressive sight just with the naked eye, but if you get a pair of binoculars or a telescope on the case, our glittery canopy really gives up its secrets. Look through a lens and what seemed like one star might split in two, or explode into a constellation, which is why many local businesses including River View are beginning to stock Dark Skies Packages for winter guests.
The package - binoculars, head torches, telescope, star maps, chairs, flask, hot water bottles and blankets (we are in Yorkshire after all) - will be put to good use at the up-coming Dark Skies Festival starting Saturday 18th February.
Timed to coincide with half term, the week promises night time walks, stargazing and night time nature watching. 'Bard of Barnsley' Ian McMillan, will be writing a verse for the occasion,. This is due to be published just ahead of the event on the festival webpage.If any local school children feel inspired to write a reply, they can contact firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more. In the meantime, let's get out and enjoy the night!