Friday 6 April 2012

The Royal Observatory 28-inch visual (refractor) telescope
Twice in its history, observations with the twenty-eight-inch refractor have been disturbed. The first time was during the First World War. Then, in 1939, the valuable object glass was sent to a place of safety during the Second World War. This was just as well since the Observatory was damaged by bombing and in 1944 the covering of the dome itself was stripped off by a V1 flying bomb. In 1947, the telescope was dismantled and sent to Herstmonceux, leading the departure of the astronomers from Greenwich. It was fully operational there from 1957 to 1970, but was then 'retired' and sent back to Greenwich to mark the Observatory's 300th anniversary in 1975.