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Roy Panther

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nickjames's picture
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Roy Panther

Nick Hewitt tells me that Roy Panther (Walgrave, UK) died recently and his funeral was last week.

Roy was the discoverer of comet C/1980 Y2 (1980u). The discovery was made visually using a 0.20m, f/4 Newtonian at 1850 UT on Christmas day 1980 when the comet was a 9th magnitude object near M56. The discovery was confirmed that evening by Mike Hendrie and George Alcock and it was Roy's first success after 601 hours of searching.  Martin Mobberley has an interesting Sky at Night on his Youtube channel which includes an interview with Roy.

Roy was the last living British visual comet discoverer.  An account of his discovery, as published in the 1981 January edition of TA is attached.

Nick.

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Martin Mobberley's picture
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Roy Panther

Nick,

I was sorry to hear this news.

A few months ago I uploaded Marcus Brain's 1981 Betamax recording of the Feb 1981 Sky at Night on which Roy was a guest. The link is below:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=67URilFX6ck

Martin

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Roy P

I too am saddened to hear this.  Roy was a lovely bloke, and his comet was a delight to observe.  

I last saw him a couple of years ago at a meeting in Northampton, where I recall, he received a standing ovation when he was introduced.  It was a marvellous moment!

I have a photo somewhere of Roy, George Alcock and John Hosty together taken at a TA meeting I think it was.  Must dig it out.

Gary

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Here's a picture of Roy taken

Here's a picture of Roy taken at the 2013 May Comet Section meeting (by David Storey I think). There was indeed a standing ovation. Here is a link to an audio recording of Denis introducing Roy to that meeting.

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Photo

Here is the photo I mentioned earlier.  Late 70's early 80's.  I forget where it was taken too, but probably a TA meeting (Earls Barton or Northampton).

John Hosty (discoverer of HS Sge Nova Sge 1977 - with a monocular in January!), George Alcock and Roy Panther.

Gary