Meet the Team

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We are a team of professional astronomers based in Northumberland who formed a social enterprise “AstroVentures CIC” to deliver stargazing experiences for the general public all over the UK, for veterans and for children in schools as part of our STEM and Mentoring programme.  Download our Dark Sky Discovery Stargazing Guide here.

Our primary mission is to get as many of you to go stargazing with us as possible.  We also support and deliver STEM and astronomy activities in schools, libraries and with the scouts/cubs/beavers/guides.  As a social enterprise it is our goal to divert our profits (when we make them!) into these educational projects.

Based at the Battlesteads Dark Sky Observatory where we go stargazing 6-7 nights a week every week of the year and we host stargazing events across the UK, but we also take guests on guided tours of the cosmos at a variety of hotels, glamping sites and self catering accommodation.

Our goal is to get as many people as we can to go stargazing wherever and whenever they can – are you AstroCurious and do you want to give it a go?

  • Roy Alexander BSc, FRAS, MInstP, Chair of DarkSky UK

    Roy Alexander BSc, FRAS, MInstP, Chair of DarkSky UK

    Director of Learning, Lead Astronomer

    Roy is a degree qualified planetary physicist and teacher who is passionate about teaching astronomy, physics and science who believes astronomy is about showing people something new and awesome in a telescope and seeing their reaction.

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  • Chris Duffy FRAS

    Chris Duffy FRAS

    Lead Astronomer & Astrophotographer (semi-retired)

    Chris is the astrophotography expert at AstroVentures and lead astronomer at Battlesteads Observatory. He is an expert astrophotographer and astronomy teacher with a passion for Dark Sky objects.

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  • Jacob Hunter

    Jacob Hunter

    Lead Astronomer, Aurora Expert & Astrophotographer

    Jacob became an astronomer after doing his Duke of Edinburgh award with Astro Ventures 2018. Since then he loves nothing more than to tell people about astronomy and the night skies.

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  • Jimmy McPartland

    Jimmy McPartland

    Lead Astronomer & Astrophotographer

    Jimmy has been looking up at the stars since he was a child and is fascinated with the workings of the cosmos, from the big bang and the first stars to black holes and supernovae. He also loves getting the most out of our everyday technology with mobile phone astrophotography.

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  • Dave Newton BSc FRAS

    Dave Newton BSc FRAS

    Lead Astronomer

    Dave Newton is a degree qualified astrophysicist with a lifelong interest in astronomy and space. He loves to share his knowledge of the universe and the view through his telescope eyepiece. Dave’s interests include galaxies and the evolution of the universe. While being mostly a visual observer, he has been known to do some lunar photography with his smartphone.

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  • Rita Roushdy BA

    Rita Roushdy BA

    Lead Astronomer

    Rita has been an astronomer for the past 10 years, finding a deep love for the stars, interstellar objects and planetary science at an early age. in 2015, she decided to be more involved professionally, so she began by volunteering at Battlesteads Observatory and is now a lead astronomer.

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Our Work in the community

Astro Ventures is a social enterprise committed to giving back to the community.  We provide free and at cost astronomy sessions to local charities, veterans and children’s groups.

If you have a children’s group that you think would enjoy a stargazing session, or if you’d like to donate, then please get in touch with us – we’d love to hear from you.

Fill in our contact form for more information.