Welcome to the CDAA

Welcome to the Clacton and District Astronomical Association web site. We are a small informal group, meeting on the first Thursday of the month. CDAA is the only Astronomical Society serving the Tendring and Colchester districts.

Monthly Meetings

These meetings are held at "Christ Church United Reform Church" Carnarvan Road, Clacton-on-Sea at 7.30 p.m. on the first Thursday of each month (except August). The meetings conclude at 9.45 p.m. Find our Meeting Hall

In addition to the main events, there are also Monthly 'Night Sky' , 'Astro-News' presentations, Seasonal Constellations and a regular raffle.

We are a friendly bunch of amateurs where new members and visitors are always warmly welcomed. Annual membership is currently £15 adults, £6 juniors (under 18 years of age). This covers admission to all of the monthly meetings

Please note that although visitors are very welcome, they are charged an entry fee of £2.00


As part of the lottery funded 'Outreach' programme, we offer speakers for local clubs, societies and schools. A small fee may be required to cover travel expences etc. Click the 'Contacts' tab to get in touch with an appropriate representative of our society. Outreach activities are outlined by clicking the 'Events' tab.

Find out more...

Our club secretary David Pugh, should be able to answer most queries about the Association itself, whereas I, Bob Leon can answer questions relating to the web site.

2016 Meeting Programme

The December 2017 Meeting

7th Decenber 2017

The Annual Quiz

Hosted by Bill Violen

quizIt's that time of year again. Local Newspaper Report As we enter the Christmas Season we at CDAA have our Annual Quiz. Individual teams answer general science questions, puzzles and some astronomy themed mind-benders. Prizes of sweets are given to all.

The November 2017 Meeting

2nd November 2017

Moons of the Solar System

by Mike Haynes

moonsMany of the planets in our solar system have moons. Local Newspaper Report Few are anything like the Earth's moon neither in terms of material structure nor size. There are very much a product of their environment. It is these differences and similarities that Mike will discuss.

The October 2017 Meeting

5th October 2017

The A.G.M.

Followed by

The Brightest Stars Part I

by David Pugh

brightAt this meeting there will be the fairly brief AGM followed by an illustrated talk entitled “The Brightest Stars Part I” by our Secretary David Pugh. David proposes to illustrate and describe the top twenty brightest stars in the sky from (in this Part I) no.20 to no.11 in a novel way like the top twenty pop charts. Local Newspaper Report He hopes that it will be practical in helping to show where to find each star as well as educational in relation to such matters as where each star is in its evolution and how it compares with our Sun. There will also be some hopefully interesting and sometimes surprising additional snippets of information. Part II covering the brightest stars no. 10 to no. 1 will be given in October next year.

The September 2017 Meeting

7th September 2017

The Most Mysterious Star in the Galaxy

by Mike Haynes

Eta CarineaMike takes a detailed look at the object known as 'Eta Carinae' Local Newspaper Report There is obviously something very strange going on.

No August Meeting

August 2017

The July 2017 Meeting

6th July 2017

Special Guest Speaker

The Outer Panets of the Solar System

by Jerry Workman

Jupiter FamilyIt is assumed that Jery will talk about the outer planets and their moons. Local Newspaper Report In particular, with results from the Cassini probe orbiting Saturn to hand, it should be the most up-to-date information available.

The June 2017 Meeting

1st June 2017

The Quantum Vacuum

by Bob Leon

solar systemThough this might be deemed a rather technical presentation, Bob feels that it is more a case of the fact certain ideas are difficult 'to get your head around'. Local Newspaper Report He hopes to present the concept that the peculiarities of Quantum Theory can lead to the spontaneous erruption of the 'Big Bang' from the 'Quantum Vacuum'.

The May 2017 Meeting

4th May 2017

Special Guest Speaker (Postponed)

The Solar System

by Andy Green

solar systemSadlly, Andy was unable to attend to give this presentation as sudden illness had him admitted to hospital. We wish him a quick recovery. Andy has been actively involved in astronomy and space for over 37 years becoming interested in astronomy aged 7. He has since travelled the world to promote astronomy give presentations and lectures His last presentation to us was entitled Aurorae' and before that, one entitled 'Impacts'. On this occasion he plans to cover aspects of the 'Solar System'
In place of this presentation David Pugh stepped in to give a talk Local Newspaper Report detailing his personal experiences of using a 'GoTo' Telescope.

The April 2017 Meeting

6th April 2017

Special Guest Speaker

The Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence

by Dr Mike Leggett

setiDr Mike Leggett will give the historical background to S.E.T.I. This will include a short introduction to astrobiology and speculations upon intelligence, civilization and technology in the universe. Local Newspaper Report He will consider the prospects for the existence of extraterrestrial intelligence bringing in well known 'Fermi Paradox' and discuss the radio astronomical searches such as Project Ozma and the SETI@home inititiative. He will look at other possible search methods together with the likely consequences of communication with extraterrestrial intelligence.

The March 2017 Meeting

2nd March 2017

The Origin of Modern Astronomy

by David Peachey

modern astronomyDavid will give his view of modern astronomy and will discuss how it has evolved and developed over the years. Local Newspaper Report Even though he doesn't tend to use visual aids, we expect the subject to be both interesting and informative.

The February 2017 Meeting

2nd February 2017

Wonders of Orion

by David Pugh

OrionDavid will discuss the stories and mythology behind the easily recognised constellation of Orion. Local Newspaper Report He will supplement this with with some of his own astro-images of the constellation and the surrounding deep sky objects.

The January 2017 Meeting

5th January 2017

The Brian Cottis Memorial Lecture

The Solar System -

A Personal/Local Perspective

by Bob Leon

(suitable for beginners)

questionsIn this special Memorial Lecture where Brian would have endorsed the subject being given at a 'basic' level, Bob hopes to bring the size and scale of the Solar System into perspective. Local Newspaper Report The method though not unique, will have a local context.