Hundreds of children from Ilfracombe will be treated to a 360 degree immersive pop up planetarium experience for the opening day of the Exmoor Dark Skies Festival.

Enjoy a 360 degrees immersive planetarium in Ilfracombe on October 17 as part of the Exmoor Dark Skies Festival.Enjoy a 360 degrees immersive planetarium in Ilfracombe on October 17 as part of the Exmoor Dark Skies Festival.

Plus on Wednesday, October 17 there will be two evening planetarium sessions for the public at Ilfracombe Academy at 5.45 and 7.30pm.

Using cutting-edge technology, stargazers will be taken on a 3D journey around the wonders of the galaxy by qualified astronomer and science teacher Simon Ould.

The experience for the schoolchildren was made possible thanks to a donation from the Rotary Club.

It’s hoped the experience will provide plenty of inspiration for the children to enter the Festival’s Dark Skies Poetry Competition. Entries can be sent to info@exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk .

Enjoy a 360 degrees immersive planetarium in Ilfracombe on October 17 as part of the Exmoor Dark Skies Festival.Enjoy a 360 degrees immersive planetarium in Ilfracombe on October 17 as part of the Exmoor Dark Skies Festival.

The winners, as judged by award-winning local poet Mark Totterdell, will receive prizes courtesy of Sunday Afternoons and Astronomy Now magazine for the following three age categories: under 11’s, 11-15 and over 16s.

Exmoor National Park’s Katrina Munro, who is co-ordinating the Festival, said: “We hope the competition will inspire everyone to look up at our starry skies, identify planets and constellations and capture the sense of wonder that unfolds. There’s 10 prizes to be won and the winning poems will be put on public display around Exmoor.”

The planetarium is one of 40 events set to take place at venues across Exmoor National Park from October 20 until November 4.

For the full festival line up go to www.exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk/darkskiesfestival .