Five society members, Andi, Andy, Lee, Mark and John from Westerdale made the journey over to Leeds Astromeet this year.  With Andi at the helm, we seemed to make good time, arriving at the venue with almost half an hour to spare before the first lecture.  Parking proved more complicated than usual, with free ‘on street’ parking, off limits, replaced by ‘not so free’ ‘round the back’ car parking, admittedly at a reduced ‘coded’ rate to those attending the Astromeet.

Once inside the hall there was time enough to peruse the trade rooms.  Two minutes later...yes, it has to be said, traders were sparse, somewhat disappointing, but on the other hand several purchases were made before the first lecture, real bargains too!

The lectures themselves will be covered in the January issue, suffice to say there was general agreement in the car on the way back, that they were better than last year, causing great debate amongst us.

As usual, dinner was spent in the student’s union complex.  Construction work was very evident wherever we went.  Leeds Uni is currently undergoing a £520 million pound facelift and expansion.  Fortunately the cost of dinner hadn’t gone up to help pay for this, it came in at around a fiver.

The afternoon session seemed to fly by, especially for anyone who nodded off.  As is customary Dr Alan Chapman drew the raffle before his talk.  Prizes were not as bountiful or generous due to the lack of traders, however of the eight or so prizes on offer Andi/Andy won two, Mark won another and we almost won a further two, one number out.  In fact most of the numbers drawn were between 990 and 1000, mirroring the numbers of our tickets. 

Slightly embarrassing, our row was up and down like a yoyo.  Our loot included a 3.2mm Bader eyepiece, a book, which bizarrely Mark had already bought earlier, and a disk about the Higgs Bosson particle.  How strange?

The homeward journey was plagued by fog, which grew ever denser as we neared, and then passed Pickering.  Fortunately, on reaching Saltersgate we ran out of it, and skies cleared somewhat.  Another astromeet done and dusted, let’s hope that next year more traders attend.