About G.A.S

The Gisborne Astronomical Club was formed in the 1960’s and has been in continuous existence ever since. Society members meet regularly and a junior society has since been established.

There are monthly G.A.S meetings for both groups. The society also runs a 6-week Introduction to Astronomy public lecture course which covers many aspects of astronomy and is delivered by great presenters.

About Cook Observatory

The James Cook Observatory, or just Cook Observatory, is the most eastern astronomical observatory in the world. It is located on Titirangi (Kaiti Hill), Gisborne, North Island, New Zealand. It is named after Captain James Cook.

ObervatoryThe Cook Observatory has a very historical past. The northern third was originally an observation post used by the home-guard during World War Two. Below the observation post and towards the road was a gun emplacement which housed an anti-submarine gun. Apparently, only one shot was ever fired from it – a test shot!

In the late 1960’s members of the newly formed Gisborne Astronomical Society asked the Gisborne City Council for a possible observatory site. The observation post was extended and modified and a 5-metre dome placed atop the building. The Gisborne Astronomical Society’s observatory was officially opened on Saturday, October 9, 1971, by the Mayor, Mr H. H. Barker. Guest speaker was Mr Peter Read (television’s Night Sky man) who emphasised the observatory as a great new asset for Gisborne.

In June 2015 the Cook Observatory was declared an earthquake risk and collapsed. Alternate venues are currently being used for G.A.S meetings.