The Royal Lancashire Observatory
I came across a series of newspaper articles from 1839 regarding a proposed observatory on Kersal Moor near Manchester and from a simple idea it evolved into a Royal Observatory then well I don't know because I don't have anymore information. I hope you enjoy the following articles:-
Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser Saturday 5th
Proposed Manchester and Salford Observatory.
more than two years have elapsed since several gentlemen, favourable
to the advancement of science, and the diffusion of useful knowledge,
were impressed with the importance of establishing an Astronomical
Observatory in the vicinity of Manchester, and adopted some measures
to promote that object.
examining the neighbourhood, they found a situation in Victoria Park,
appearing to possess more advantages than any other to which their
attention had been directed; and after several interviews with the
directors of the park, who met their wishes in a liberal spirit, it
was resolved at a general meeting of the proprietary, that a plot of
land should be offered for an Observatory, at a nominal chief rent.
a view of availing themselves of an offer so generously made, they
held a meeting at the York Hotel, King-street, on the 11th of August,
1837, at which Josh. Denison, Esq. was called the chair, when a
provisional committee, consisting Dr. Dalton, Dr. Jas. L. Bardslev,
Dr. Chas. Henry, Dr. Chas. Phillips, Messrs. John Kennedy,, Josh.
Denison, James Wood, Wm. Fairbairn, J. C. Dyer, Peter Clare, Josh.
Adshead, John Westhead, J. H. Stanway, Lawrence Buchan, William Read,
Eaton Hodgkinson, and the Rev. William Giles was appointed, and
requested to examine more minutely into the eligibility of the
proposed plot of land, and to suggest such arrangements as would
conduce to the accomplishment of the object in view.
immediate compliance with these instructions was somewhat interfered
with by the commercial difficulties of that period, but though this
was unfortunately the case, the matter was kept constantly in view,
and about three months since it was decided that operations should be
actively resumed before the end of the year.
committee accordingly held a meeting at Dr. Dalton's, on Monday last,
the 31st ult., at which the Doctor presided, when sub-committees were
appointed, for the more readily carrying into effect the resolution
of the meeting held at the York Hotel, in August, 1837. —In
addition to the instruments which peculiarly belong to an
Astronomical Observatory, it is proposed to procure others suitable
for investigating and illustrating the sciences of optics, magnetism,
meteorology, &c, and to have a library, reading and lecture
rooms. Surely the towns of Manchester and Salford, which have long
been distinguished for science and manufacturing industry, will
support an institution so highly calculated to add to their
celebrity, and to afford to their inhabitants not only the means of
acquiring much useful information, but of promoting the interests of
several departments of science which have hitherto been cultivated by
a very small proportion of the immense population of the district.
Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser Saturday 3rd
Design for an Observatory Proposed to be Erected Kersal Moor.
W. Atkinson, Architect.—Most of our readers will be aware that it
is in contemplation to establish, in the immediate neighbourhood of
this town, an observatory for " astronomical and meteorological
purposes," the site suggested for which is a portion of land
lying on that side of Kersal Moor nearest to Manchester. The
lithographic print before us is a sketch of the design made, for this
purpose, by our townsman, Mr. T. Atkinson, who, in this instance, has
exercised his talents most advantageously in combining architectural
beauty with much of internal convenience.
design, indeed, in its architectural features, affords great scope
for admiration. The domes being essential to the astronomical
operations of the institution, a Roman character has been judiciously
adopted, for in no other style can the figure of a dome be made to
appeal - with propriety. The principal entrance is sufficiently
distinguished in importance from the rest of the front by its very
suitable decoration, exhibiting, as does every other ornamental
feature of the design, both good taste and strict purity of detail;
the best and most classical models of the style in which the building
is designed having, in this respect, been rigidly adhered to, in the
spirit, at least, if not in the letter.
telescope room, rising over the rest of the building, for the purpose
of commanding an extensive view, is wisely employed as a crowning
object, and gives that pyramidal form to the structure, which after
all, is the soul and essence of the beautiful in every isolated
architectural composition. Whilst giving to Mr. T Atkinson that
praise which is so justly his due, we must not omit to state that the
lithographic execution of the work reflects great credit upon
Messrs. Day and Haghe.
Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser Wednesday 4th
Observatory.—This project is, we are happy to find, progressing
very rapidly. A number of the members of the provisional committee
were, on Friday morning, honoured by an interview with Lord Francis
Egerton, at the York Hotel. His lordship, with that liberality by
which he has always been characterized, accepted the appointment of
president. He made a donation of £100, and became a general
subscriber. He also presented, for the library, some very valuable
books connected with the science.
Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser Saturday 30th
LANCASHIRE ASTRONOMICAL AND METEOROLOGICAL OBSERVATORY, BROUGHTON
establishment under the patronage and presidency of Lord Francis
Egerton, has been warmly countenanced and actively promoted by Sir J
F W Herschel, and several eminent professors in the university of
Cambridge, as well by a number of gentlemen of the highest
respectability Manchester and the vicinity.
are now open for donations and subscriptions at the banks of Messrs.
Jones, Loyd, and Co; Sir Benjamin Heywood Bart, and Messrs. Cunliffe,
Brooks, and Co; Bank of Manchester: Commercial Bank of England; and
at Mr Francis Abott’s , 50, Market-street. Manchester, where the
plans may be inspected, and prospectuses obtained, JOHN DAVIES,
Chairman of the Provisional Committee.