Good Causes

Why stars help us make light work of life

Gazing at the night sky is a wonderful way of getting some perspective about life on Earth, according to astronomer Liam Reed. He said, “A lot of people get tied up with what seems to be important. The universe doesn’t care.”

Liam works at the Kielder Observatory, one of the best places in the UK to get a view of stars. The National Lottery-funded facility is located in a forest in Northumberland where the light pollution from houses and streets is at a minimum.

Nothing gives him more satisfaction than helping visitors to the observatory identify stars – and the North Star in particular. His first tip: wrap up warm. The second: wait a while to let your eyes adjust to the dark. He said, “It takes between 25 and 30 minutes for the chemical in your eye to disappear and for you to see the sky better.”

Now you’re ready to find the North Star, the brightest star in the constellation Ursa Minor. Liam said, “Most people know The Plough as looking like a soup ladle. It has a curved handle and four stars that make up the cup. If you draw a line through the last two stars in the cup you’ll find the North Star.”

The National Lottery has funded more than 625,000 good causes across the UK. This video series introduces you to fascinating people involved with just 5 of them and asks them to share some tips, techniques and secrets. As well as learning how to find the North Star, you’ll find out how to steady your nerves from a comedian. A filmmaker has advice on directing real people, you’ll learn from a trapeze artist how to build strength and a counsellor shares her tips on maintaining wellbeing.

Check out Liam’s video below.

How to find the North Star with Kielder Observatory

1st March 2021

The National Lottery has been changing the lives of winners and supporting good causes across the UK since 1994. In that time, there have been more than 6,100 new millionaires created and by playing The National Lottery you raise over £30 million for good causes every week.

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