'When, as a child, I laughed and wept, time crept.

When, as a youth, I dreamt and talked, time walked.

When I became a full grown man, time ran.

When, older still, I daily grew, time flew.

Soon I shall find, on travelling on, time gone !'

Some lines written on a clock in the Cathedral Church of Christ and The Blessed Virgin Mary, Chester, U.K.


C/2020 F3
Imaged on Saturday, July 11, by Maurice Bradwell from Crofton , WAKEFIELD, West Yorkshire. Thanks Maurice!

First I must point out that this is an educational site and I invite you to download any of the material you find here. Feel free to download any of the content, which could be of use, or of interest to you. That is what this 'SKYNOTES' website is here for! 

Welcome to jonvran.co.uk, John's simple astronomy site where you will find information about what is happening in the night sky from the point of view of Scarborough in the United kingdom, latitude 54 deg. 17 minutes north, longitude 00 deg. 25 minutes west,(situated on the east coast, midway between London and Edinburgh, and also mainland Britain); as well as what I hope are other interesting bits and pieces, of use to everyone.

Please feel free to download and use any of the material from my website, which you find useful. It is here for you to use !

Historically, these 'Skynotes' are a direct cyber-descendent, of the paper Sky notes I prepared, for many years, by hand, for members, at each meeting of the Scarborough Astronomical Society from the moment the Society began in February, 1976. In those days, I produced all the illustrations including the star charts by hand, but now, with the advent of excellent astronomy software programs, I am able to use much better graphics, for which I must thank the many programmers who have produced these wonderful software gems. In the credits section you will find a list of these amazing sources which allow me to continue to produce my 'Skynotes', for the benefit of all. It does not seem that they have been produced continuously for over 46 years, but as the Latin inscription reminds us: tempvs fvgit ! (time flies)!. There are many 'pages' in this different version of 'Skynotes'. These are listed in the MENU at the top of the page. My hope is that you find within them something of interest, and may I, here, express my gratitude to the many people who have already visited, this, my small contribution towards the popularisation of astronomy, which has been my lifelong aim and ambition.

I record here also a special 'Thank-you' for two very special teachers. First, Miss M Walker (later Mrs Martin). I was in her form at Normanton Secondary Modern school, before transferring to the grammar school at the age of 13. She gave me a small note nook in which to write about and draw events taking place in the night sky. This was to be the tiny 'seed' which would eventually grow into these 'Skynotes'. Secondly, I owe a huge debt of gratitude to the late Senior English Master, of Normanton Grammar School, Mr. T Hewson, who made me stand up in class during 'English' on Tuesday afternoons, and read aloud, to the class, several pages of Gulliver's Travels, by Jonathan Swift, despite the difficulties I had, at that time in reading words. Thanks to him, I can now read fluently; but more importantly, he taught me to have confidence, to be able to share my love of astronomy with all to whom I have been invited to speak; and ultimately to become a teacher myself.

 It is my hope that you will enjoy these pages, and return here often to take what you will from this site, as the months change, the result of Earth's journey around the sun.

May you too, always follow safe paths, and have clear and unclouded skies, in all the many aspects of your life!


Finally, I want to say a huge 'Thank You!' to friends, collegues and some of my ex students who provide me with excellent images which they have, very kindly, given me permission to use.

 The BLOG (About Me) bit is on a separate page. You can find it, if you are interested, via the MENU above!

October Sunrise, over the NORTH SEA, SCARBOROUGH.
A beautiful Image, courtesy of Beverley Senturk. Thanks Beverley

PLEASE NOTE : Because of the size of this FRONT PAGE, which resulted in the slow loading of the material on some machines; I have created another additional page. It is called 'FRONT PAGE continued' and can be reached using the MENU above.

You will find there, illustrations of Saturn and its fascinating moon ENCELADUS, thought to be a possible abode of life, as is Jupiter's satellite Europa (also to be seen on this additional page)

THE TWO QUADRANT CHARTS, updated monthly are now to be found on the supplementary FRONT PAGE also.

SKYNOTES are available. Use The MENU above to find the current month's SKYNOTES.

ASTEROIDAL OCCULTATIONS for THE CURRENT MONTH accessible via the Menu above (ASTEROIDAL EVENTS). Thanks For those Andrej !

VENUS, the "EVENING STAR", 'HESPERUS' to the Ancients reached INFERIOR CONJUNCTION with the Sun on JUNE 03. Thereafter Venus moved into the morning sky as 'PHOSPHORUS'  the "MORNING STAR".

REMOTE PLANETS. The paths of URANUS, NEPTUNE, and PLUTO, have been updated for 2020. 

POEM by Richard H Mann 'FRIENDS OF MINE' added to the ASTRONOMICAL POETRY page (see MENU above)



For information about suitable times to see the ISS, other satellites, and interesting objects, and to download the application if you wish, go to the following admirable site:



The TIMES shown here are UNIVERSAL TIME   So when SUMMER TIME is in force, you must ADD ONE HOUR.


Date Brightness Start Highest point End Pass type
(mag) Time Alt. Az. Time Alt. Az. Time Alt. Az.
24 Oct -1.1 05:46:34 10° SSW 05:49:00 19° SSE 05:51:28 10° ESE visible

OCTOBER 19 at 18h UT. WAXING CRESCENT. NEW MOON was on OCTOBER 16 at 19h 31 UT. FIRST QUARTER is on OCTOBER 23 at 13h 23 UT



Next chosen LUNAR OCCULTATION REAPPEARANCE visible from Scarborough UK
OCTOBER 20 at 18h 14 UT

OCTOBER 20:The SUN'S celestial position at 12h UT.
Astronomical Constellation : VIRGO. Astrological Sign: LIBRA. At the Autumn Equinox on SEPTEMBER 22 at 13h 31m UT, the SUN entered the astrological sign of LIBRA, the Balance

OCTOBER 19. Today's SOLAR PHOTOSPHERE image in visible light, courtesy of NASA.

OCTOBER 13, 2020.
The planet's aspect at 00h UT on this day.

REMEMBER ------- NEVER LOOK DIRECTLY AT THE SUN unless you have the proper astronomical filters for the purpose, NOT the one often provided by the telescope manufacturer. IT IS SAFER TO PROJECT THE SUN'S IMAGE ONTO A SCREEN.

Never look through view finders at the sun. instead look at the shadow of the instrument on a card. When the shadow is as small as it can be, it is pointing towards the sun, and you will see the safe image of the Sun on the card. NEVER LOOK DIRECTLY AT THE SUN------ IT CAN BLIND YOU !

Mars at its brightest, m(v) -2.6. imaged by Maurice Bradwell from Crofton, near WAKEFIELD, West Yorkshire. Here Mars shines among the stars of PISCES.
Thank you Maurice for this excellent image of the planet in your night sky!


The times when ALGOL (Beta Persei), the famous eclipsing variable star reaches its MINIMUM brightness may be found in the monthly SKYNOTES summary for each month. The star has a page dedicated to itself also, accessible via the MENU above.

ASTRONOMICAL EVENTS due this month may be found in the MONTHLY SKYNOTES,accessible via the MENU above, and on the supplementary 'FRONT PAGE', see above.


THE NEXT FULL MOON : THE HUNTER'S MOON of OCTOBER 31, 2020, at 14h 49 UT. Quite possibly named after Herne, The Hunter, an ancient British God who, at this time of year, led the 'Wild Hunt' across the midnight skies. See the October SkyNotes for alternative ideas behind this Moon's name. Incidentally, because it is the second Full Moon of October, it is also called a 'Blue Moon', a name given to a second full moon within a month, Please N.B.: NOT because of a colour change !!!

The angular diameter of the Planets compared in OCTOBER, 2020

SCARBOROUGH Lighthouse, SOUTH BAY, Mid October.
Image courtesy of Faith Young @FaithYoungWriter.
Thanks Faith.

The waxing gibbous Moon on MAY 05 , Imaged by:
@FeelBetter2day from SCARBOROUGH UK Thanks Linda!



OCTOBER 20, 2020.

RISE: 07h 40

SET:  17h 52


10h 11m 31s 


RISE: 12h 38.  SET: 20h 03.



OCTOBER 20, 2O20


LW:   01h 03 

HW:  07h 05 

LW:   13h 27

HW:  19h 21


The images of SCARBOROUGH preceeding and following these tables are by kind peremission of people who live here, and who are justifiably proud of their seaside town on the Yorkshire Coast. 

SCARBOROUGH October, NORTH BAY, Looking North. Image courtesy of @FeelBetter2day . Thanks Linda

OCTOBER 19, at 19h Universal Time JUPITER and the GALILEAN SATELLITES. In this illustration, NORTH is up. The Satellites are numbered as follows : 1= IO, 2= EUROPA, 3= GANYMEDE, and 4= CALLISTO

TOTAL ECLIPSE OF THE SUN - DECEMBER 14, 2020. Totality occurs at the UT times indicated on the map. The limits of where the eclipse can be seen is marked. NB Only parts of SOUTH AMERICA get to see this eclipse !The 'layers' in the 'Eclipse Zone' on the map show the percentage of Sun covered by the Moon. Each segment is a 10% increase, starting at the edge (10%) and finishing at the centre at totality (100%).
Future solar and lunar eclipses ---may be found using the MENU above.