Thorner Moongaze - 6th September 2014

Amateur astronomer Richard Darn gets ready for the Thorner stargazing event.

Amateur astronomer Richard Darn gets ready for the Thorner stargazing event. - Credit: Tony Bartholomew

Skygazing event marks the 45th anniversary of man’s first step on the moon and raises money for charity

Powerful telescopes will be turned skywards to reveal the wonders of the moon this month. Stargazers from across the north will help stage the second mega-astro event in The Victory Hall in Thorner, near Leeds, to support the work of the local Haven Breast Cancer Support charity. Last year more than 160 people made the most of the clear, starry conditions and helped to raise nearly £1,800.

This time the event, called the Thorner Moongaze, marks the 45th anniversary of man first stepping foot on the moon. ‘The buzz at the last event was unbelievable and that’s encouraged us to do it all over again,’ said organiser, Soraya Usman, from Thorner. Soraya won her own battle against breast cancer with the support of the Haven and has since dedicated herself to raising funds for the organisation.

‘It’s incredible to think that the moon landings were so long ago and we’ll be offering stunning views of lunar craters, mountains and valleys,’ added Richard Darn from York Astronomical Society. ‘And we will keep our eyes peeled for man-made satellites scuttling across the night sky.’

There’ll also be an inflatable planetarium, colourful talks, chance to handle space rock and watch amazing time-lapse movies, together with refreshments at the event which takes place on September 6th. Tickets are £7 for adults, £3 for children and £18 for a family ticket (two adults and two children) and are available from Tom Robert Shaw at or call 0113 284 7800. General enquiries can be sent to or call 07564 146854.You will need to wrap up warm and bring a torch and binoculars if you have them. The event, which is wheelchair accessible, begins at 7.15pm and booking is required. It goes ahead in all weathers.

About Haven Breast Cancer Support

The Haven provides a wide range of therapies, completely free of charge, which help people deal with the physical and emotional side effects of breast cancer. Specialist nurses and experts in nutrition, exercise and emotional support provide tailor-made programmes for each visitor. No referral is necessary.

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The Haven programme is fully integrated with hospital medical treatment. It is a global leader in its field and cancer specialists from all over the world visit Havens and learn from them. Help is also available through

An outreach programme, including many of the support centres’ elements, is available to anyone who can’t get to one of the Havens.

The Haven does not receive any government funding so is entirely dependent on charitable donations and fundraising events. It costs around £1,000 to provide the Haven programme for each visitor and the care and support make a huge difference to lives at a difficult time.