The Radcliffe Observatory


    WHEN in the Court of Chancery on July 2 Mr. Justice Bennett approved in principle the application of the Radcliffe Trustees for permission to remove their observatory from Oxford to a site on the high veld near Pretoria, this project, which has been the subject of discussion for several years, reached a further and important stage in its development. Although the judge has reserved his final sanction of the scheme until he is satisfied as to certain details of law and finance, it is not anticipated that these will give rise to any serious difficulty. The Radcliffe Trustees have from the outset wished for some system of close co-operation between the observatory in South Africa and the University of Oxford, and it is intended that the scheme submitted to the judge for his final sanction shall set forth plans for such co-operation in a more concrete form than has hitherto been possible. The present buildings of the Radcliffe Observatory have to be vacated in the summer of next year, when they will be taken over by the Oxford Medical School, but several years must clearly elapse before the new observatory with its 72-inch telescope will be able to commence operations on the site on the hills outside Pretoria most generously presented by the municipality of that city. When it does, it will find waiting for it a vast field of nebulae and faint stars yet unexplored with the spectroscope.

    Rights and permissions

    Reprints and Permissions

    About this article

    Cite this article

    The Radcliffe Observatory. Nature 134, 56 (1934).

    Download citation


    By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.