Watch partial solar eclipse

A partial eclipse will take place on 20 March at around 9.30am.

A partial eclipse will take place on 20 March at around 9.30am.

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The East Riding Astronomers group has issued important safety advice ahead of the partial solar eclipse this week.

The astronomers group, which operates from an observation site at Arras Hill, Sancton, wants people to enjoy the spectacle and make sure their eyes are well protected.

The solar eclipse will be visible in the East Riding, weather permitting, and there will not be another for the next 11 years.

The skies will begin to darken across the country on Friday (20 March), at 8.24am before the eclipse reaches its peak at 9.30am.

And even though a total eclipse of the sun will be seen only from the Svalbard islands, Norway, and the Faroe Islands, East Yorkshire is still set to experience the stunning cosmic event with experts estimating that around 90 per cent of the sun will be obscured.

Anthony Scaife, secretary of the East Riding Astronomers, said: “The best way to watch the spectacle is to project it through a pair of binoculars onto a board or piece of paper. Perhaps use a door on a building that is painted white or even a piece cardboard would do the trick.

“Residents should never directly look at the eclipse.

“The main point I would like to get across is never, ever, look at the eclipse.

“The heat from the sun, and the radiation with it, could cause blindness so that’s the risk if people do not watch the eclipse safely.

“The eclipse itself will look like a biscuit with a bite taken out of it with the dark shadow over it.

“They are fairly common and the last one we had in this country was clouded out. The biggest problem of all for people trying to watch the eclipse will be the weather.”

The society is expecting a lot of interest to be generated, thanks to the BBC running its Stargazing LIVE series in the two days before the eclipse.

The next eclipse of this magnitude is in 2026.

For more details on East Riding Astronomers visit http://www.astrogen.karoo.net/era_index.html