Graeme Kershaw and the Townsend Telescope

Members of the UC community recently received the sad news that Graeme Kershaw passed away.  Formerly a technician in the UC Physics and Astronomy Department for 51 years, he was also restoring the Townsend Telescope.

Here, Director of Alumni & UC Foundation Jo Dowling recalls working with Graeme. 

Farewell to Graeme Kershaw

I had the great privilege of working with Graeme Kershaw and his wife Dale on the fundraising campaign to restore the Townsend Telescope which was damaged when the Observatory Tower at The Arts Centre came down in the February 2011 earthquake.  His passion for the project, his commitment to UC and our wider community was always obvious to see. 

When the Teece family provided the majority of the funds required it was a very special day.  Having been a technician in the physics and astronomy department for many years and having worked on the telescope through his career at UC, he was uniquely positioned to do the detailed work on restoring the telescope. 

 Recently, Graeme was visibly delighted to be demonstrating the restored telescope at the astronomy exhibition being held at The Arts Centre.  While it’s extremely sad that he won’t be able to see the telescope reinstated in the Observatory Tower, I know he would be very proud to have played such a vital role in giving Cantabrians access to the stars for generations to come.

Jo Dowling 
Click here to read Professor John Hearnshaw’s recollections>

Click here to read the Chronicle story about Graeme’s work on the Townsend Telescope on page 7, here>