‘Impressive’ Perseid meteor shower seen over UK – BBC News

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Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Meteors captured above the Jill Windmill in West Sussex early on Sunday

The Perseid meteor shower has been seen over parts of the UK, giving stargazers the opportunity to spot scores of shooting stars in the sky.

The shower was due to peak in the UK on Saturday night, in a display also visible in other parts of the world.

Stargazers took to social media to say they had seen the display, in which 100 meteors had been expected an hour.

The Perseid meteor shower occurs every July and August as the Earth passes debris from the Swift-Tuttle comet.

Image copyright @KeithTrueman
Image caption BBC News website reader Keith Trueman captured the meteor shower against the background of the Milky Way on Exmoor
Image copyright Bob Girling
Image caption Bob Girling witnessed this impressive sight above Chilton, Oxfordshire, at around 23:20 BST
Image copyright Michiko Smith
Image caption Michiko Smith took a series of photos, including this one, from her back garden in Normanton, West Yorkshire
Image copyright Alan Saunders
Image caption Relatively clear skies above Ide, near Exeter, gave Alan Saunders a chance to photograph the meteor shower from his house
Image copyright Darren Felgate
Image caption Darren Felgate said this was taken from his back garden near the cricket ground in Scarborough
Image copyright Brian Gibson
Image caption A Perseid meteor passing through the constellation of Ursa Major was photographed by Brian Gibson from his back garden in Milngavie, Glasgow at 23:03 BST

Former England cricketer Paul Collingwood was among those who attempted to spot the meteors.

He tweeted that the shower had been “impressive”.

Writer Robert Macfarlane said the “eye-searing silver sky-scratches beat any firework display I’ve ever seen”.

However, not everyone spotted the shower so easily.

BBC political correspondent Chris Mason tweeted that he had tried to view the shower, but missed many of the shooting stars.

Experts had warned that the Perseids may have been harder to see this year as the Moon was three-quarters full.

But Met Office forecaster Marco Petagna said the weather had given stargazers a good opportunity to see the meteor shower.

He said: “There were some good cloud breaks, so many areas would have had a good chance to see them during the early hours. It would have been pretty good viewing.”

Robin Scagell, vice president of the Society For Popular Astronomy, added that although the intensity of the display had peaked on Saturday (12 August), the meteor shower would still be visible until 20 August.

He said: “For the next few days you could expect to see some – but decreasing numbers. So tonight will be probably the best chance of seeing them if you missed them last night.”

The best place to see the meteors was under a clear sky, away from built-up areas, he said.

Image copyright Barry Bird
Image caption Barry Bird captured this view of a Perseid meteor, the Pleiades and Venus rising over Winchcombe, Gloucestershire
Image copyright John-Paul Brophy
Image caption A Perseid meteor appears over Beachy Head in Eastbourne in this shot by reader John-Paul Brophy
Image copyright Mike Driscoll
Image caption Mike Driscoll photographed this view of a meteor passing through The Plough over his house in Ashurst, Hampshire
Image copyright John Cooper
Image caption John Cooper witnessed this Perseid meteor from his back garden in Leicestershire at about 02:00 BST on Sunday.

Did you watch the Perseid meteor shower on Saturday night? E-mail pictures of your sightings to haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk.

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Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-40909057

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