Astronomer Royal

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Post by kosovohp on Fri Dec 03, 2010 6:05 am

In 1949, the Gascoignes' third child, daughter Hester, was born.[5] Like many Observatory personnel, the Gascoignes lived in a staff residence on Mount Stromlo, which was a long difficult trip away from Canberra. It was cold and lonely, particularly for Rosalie, but they enjoyed the outdoors, and the landscape inspired Rosalie's creativity and later her artistic career.[1][14] In 1960 they relocated to Deakin in suburban Canberra,[5] and in the late 1960s they moved to another suburb, Pearce.[6]
In 1957, administrative responsibility for the Commonwealth Observatory was transferred from the Australian Government's Department of the Interior to the Australian National University (ANU), a move supported by both its director, Richard Woolley, and Gascoigne.[15] This was an era of significant change at Mount Stromlo: in January 1956 Woolley had resigned as director of Mount Stromlo to take up a position as Astronomer Royal and director of the Royal Observatory Greenwich.[16] He was replaced by Bart Bok, whom Gascoigne liked and under whose directorship he played a significant role.[17] Also in 1957, the Mount Stromlo team began searching for a new field observatory site, due to the increased light pollution from Canberra's growth.[18] The search was vigorously promoted by Bok, and after an examination of 20 possible locations, two were shortlisted: Mount Bingar, near Griffith, New South Wales, and Siding Spring, near Coonabarabran, New South Wales.[19] Gascoigne was one of a group of scientists who visited Siding Spring Mountain as part of the search,[20] and he was one of those who advocated this choice:[21]

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