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Thousands are signing a new petition to save Mills Observatory from potential closure


A new petition has launched in a bid to save Mills Observatory from closure after Dundee City Council announced a consultation looking at the future of the venue alongside Broughty Castle and Caird Park golf course.


The petition, which was created on Change.org has already amassed 1,200 signatures since it was launched four days ago.


Mills Observatory is the UK's first purpose built public observatory, having opened in 1935.


The petition was created by David Millar who states in the description of the petition page:


"Some of you may be aware that Dundee council are proposing to close Mills Observatory. A real shame to lose this historic Art Deco building and the Thomas Cooke telescope within. The telescope has fallen into disrepair over the years and requires some major refurbishment."


Some of the petitions supporters have expressed their worries of the future of the Observatory.


Heather Johnston, who has cited the Observatory as a base for helping her advance her scientific career said:


"Growing up in Dundee in a working-class household, I had no idea what attending university even meant.


I cannot emphasise enough how instrumental being able to attend planetarium shows as a young child at Mills Observatory helped shaped my scientific career and fostered a lifelong curiosity about how the world works.


Another petition signature came from Brian Anderson who said:


"As one of the four old public observatories in Scotland, the Mills Observatory is a valuable asset for Dundee council and for the people of Dundee."


Brian also mentioned that Dundee has strong links with astronomy, citing Williamina Fleming, an astronomer who was born in Dundee, who discovered the Horsehead Nebula, as a direct example.


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