The last meteor shower of the year will light up the skies above West Yorkshire this week, giving stargazers a chance to see one final cosmic-coloured display before the 2024 celestial calendar begins.

This meteor shower is known for putting on an unforgettable show as we could potentially see up to 150 meteors per hour but where does it get its name from?

Go Stargazing explains: “Named after the constellation Gemini from which the meteors appear to radiate the Geminids are a product of debris left over from asteroid '3200 Phaethon'.

“Geminids are renowned for their bright display and sometimes appear as green flashes due to the material they are made up of.”

According to the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, the Geminids are unusual as they can be multi-coloured – mainly white, some yellow and a few green, red and blue.

When is the best time to see the Geminid meteor shower in West Yorkshire?

This annual Geminid meteor shower usually takes place from December 4-16 but it is expected to peak around 7.30pm on Thursday, December 14 and will be visible until the early morning of December 15.

Where to see Geminid meteor shower on Thursday night in West Yorkshire

@museumofscience Over 100 shooting stars per hour are set to dazzle the night sky globally, marking the grand arrival of the Geminid Meteor Shower!   Peaking on December 13th and 14th, this annual event is caused by Earth passing through the debris trail left by asteroid 3200 Phaethon. A waxing crescent moon on the peak nights ensures optimal darkness for sky gazers to enjoy the show!   #Space #Meteor #Asteroid #Astronomy #MeteorShower #SkyGazing ♬ original sound - Museum of Science

Some West Yorkshire locations listed by Go Stargazing include:

  • Buckstones Car Park - New Hey Road, Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, HD3 3FT
  • Rosse Observatory - Carleton Road, Pontefract, West Yorkshire, WF8 3RJ

You can see the full list of all stargazing events across West Yorkshire here.

If you can’t head out to any of the above locations, Go Stargazing recommends: “The best places to see them will be somewhere away from our light-polluted towns at a location that has a wide open expanse of skies free of obstructions on the horizons.

“Rather than staring at any single point use your peripheral vision to scan as much of the sky as possible and your eyes will be automatically drawn to any shooting stars.

“As always wherever you choose to go first tell someone where you are going, wrap up warm, take some hot drinks and be patient!”

For the best chance of spotting the Geminids, viewers should lie flat on their backs with feet facing south, allowing for the best view of the sky.