Got a TV Licence?

You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.

Find out more
I don’t have a TV Licence.


  1. All parts of the UK have been witnessing a partial solar eclipse, which started at about 08:18 GMT in southern England and peaked at around 09:36
  2. The Faroe Islands and Svalbard in the Arctic Circle were the only places to experience a total eclipse
  3. The amount of the sun's disc which is obscured varied from 96% in northern Scotland to 83% in southern England

Live Reporting

By Chris Lansdown, Lauren Turner, Kerry Alexandra, Jennifer Green and Michael Orwell

All times stated are UK

That just about wraps up our coverage of the solar eclipse. We hope you've enjoyed following events as the the skies went dark - and thank you for all your contributions.

Make sure you join us for the next eclipse!

Get in touch


Barry Guard in France emails: As I am in the South of France there was not as much here but it did go darker. I watched it on the BBC website and it brought me to tears, it was so moving! Absolutely wonderful!!

The family of a young astronomy fanatic gave about 28,000 pairs of special protective eclipse glasses to local schoolchildren in memory of their son, who died at the age of 10 in 2009. You can read their story


Get in touch

George Holliday, Bridge of Allen, sent us this lovely image

Bird in front of the eclipse
George Holliday

Get in touch


Grace and Bill in Tavistock, Devon emailed: Fantastic coverage of the eclipse. Thank you to the whole team - brilliant job!!!!!

Nicola Sturgeon

Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon went to the Glasgow Science Centre to see the eclipse.

Get in touch

Ben Rymer in East Yorkshire sent us this picture of a very red sky taken during Friday's eclipse.

Helicopter in front of the sun
Ben Rymer
A boy holds protective glasses as he watches a partial solar eclipse from the grounds of Belfast Zoo.

Watching through protective glasses and through a window - this boy viewing the partial eclipse from the grounds of Belfast Zoo had the right idea about safety!

A spot of sunlight breaks through the clouds and shines on a vessel on the sea during the partial phase of a solar eclipse before totality.

A spot of sunlight breaks through the clouds and shines on a vessel during the eclipse as seen in Torshavn, the capital of the Faroe Islands.

Was the oldest eclipse on record in Syria?

A Babylonian clay tablet (similar to the one shown below) is thought to be the earliest record of a total solar eclipse.

The tablet was uncovered in the ancient city of Ugarit - located in modern day Syria - and has two possible dates:

3 May 1375 BC or
5 March 1223 BC, the latter being favoured by most recent publications.

Babylonian clay tablet showing eclipse dates
The solar eclipse is projected onto a flat surface through a telescope in the Insulaner Observatory in Berlin, Germany.

The partial solar eclipse was projected on to a flat surface through a telescope at the Insulaner Observatory in Berlin, Germany.

Get in touch

Adil Amin sent us his picture of the eclipse behind a tree in Royston, Hertfordshire.

Eclipse behind a tree
Adil Amin

Ali Boyle from the Science Museum in London has collated some interesting eclipse-related items from the museum's collection - you can see it on Storify


While some people had a spectacular view of the eclipse, others weren't quite so lucky. Hundreds had gathered at Regent's Park, London, with their protective glasses and telescopes ready - but cloudy conditions meant they were redundant.

Student doctor Uzair Adam, 23, from Clapham, south London, said: "It's been slightly anti-climactic. I remember the last one when I was a little kid.

"I remember the sky going dark and I thought: 'Wow, this is a moment to remember in history'.

"I thought that is what it's going to be today."

Get in touch


Steve Braithwaite in Perth in Scotland sent us a picture of the reading from his solar panels during the eclipse.

Graph of light from sun
Steve Braithwaite

The end of solar eclipses?

It's pure coincidence that we live in an age where Moon and Sun appear to be the same size from Earth; so the Moon is able to block out the Sun.

But the Moon is on the move. It's now around 18 times further away from us than when it was formed 4.5 billion years ago.

As the Moon moves away from us it will eventually be too far to completely block out the Sun. So enjoy the view while it lasts...

Discover why the Moon is moving away and what this means for us

Earth, from the Moon

Special solar filter glasses were one of the best ways to see the eclipse - it's what this trio wore at Stonehenge in Wiltshire.

An astronomy expert has tried to explain why the eclipse has been so special.

Dr Daniel Brown of Nottingham Trent University said: "The event illustrates why astronomy is the oldest science of them all, reaching back many millennia.

"It makes the cosmos and the universe come alive and shows how human emotions are influenced by skyscape: the sky together with the land and everything around us."

Hobby astronomer Hans-Ulrich and his son Tillmann gaze at the partial solar eclipse using a self-made pinhole camera made of cardboard in front the observatory in Hanover, Germany,

Amateur astronomer Hans-Ulrich and his son Tillmann used a home-made pinhole camera to see the eclipse in Hanover, Germany,

Alison Hendry in Perth and Kinross in Scotland sent us this image

Bird in front of the eclipse
Alison Hendry

Next total eclipse

On 21 August 2017, a total eclipse of the Sun will begin in the northern Pacific and cross the US from west to east.

Nasa has created a map showing the predicted path of the 2017 total eclipse through the US. Time to get excited.

Path of 2017 total solar eclipse

A partial eclipse will also be visible over most of North America.

Find out more about the 2017 total eclipse

Robin Clegg in Birmingham sent us this picture of his view of the eclipse

Eclipse and dark sky
Robin Clegg
A man uses a dental X-ray to watch a partial solar eclipse in Pristina

Well, that's a novel way to view the eclipse! The advice was not to view the sun directly - but instead of special glasses, this man in Pristina, Kosovo, decided to use a dental X-ray.

Is eclipse-chasing addictive?

Eclipse-chasing psychologist Dr Kate Russo seems to think so.

On her website Dr Russo describes how it feels to chase the Moon's shadow: "Once you have seen a total eclipse, it seems to ignite a fire that becomes a powerful driving force. Eclipse chasing is not just a hobby - eclipse chasing is a way of life."

Read Dr Kate Russo's blog on the psychology of eclipses

Wales pictures

The view of the eclipse in south Wales reaching its peak
Allan Trow

Wales was one of the best areas in the UK to see the eclipse from. Check out some of the best images of the day


History repeating: Every 6,585.3 days

Nearly identical eclipses (total, annual, or partial) reoccur after 18 years, 11 days and 8 hours, or every 6,585.3 days. This is called the Saros cycle. It was first known as a period when lunar eclipses seem to repeat themselves, but

the cycle is applicable to solar eclipses as well.

Get in touch


Paddy Kenny emails: I had an amazing time watching the eclipse and numerous efforts to create a safe eclipse viewer, couldn't get them to work just as I give up I threw a piece of card on the worktop in my kitchen only to realize that conveniently the holes in my blind slats for the cords cast an amazing image of the eclipse unconventional but worked amazingly well experienced the eclipse in stunning clarity!


The partial eclipse can just about be seen over Stonehenge, Wiltshire, in this image.

Other eclipses in 2015

There are at least four eclipses every year - two solar and two lunar. Although up to seven can occur in one given year.

The next eclipse of 2015 is a lunar eclipse on 4 April. The next solar eclipse will be a partial one on 3 September. The final eclipse of this year is a lunar eclipse on 28 September.

Where to see an eclipse

A partial solar eclipse forms in the sky through clouds near the cross of the Church of St Nicholas the Miracle-Maker in Sofia

The partial solar eclipse forming earlier near the cross of the Church of St Nicholas the Miracle-Maker in Sofia, Bulgaria.


tweeted: "Pilots on some regular scheduled flights gave the passengers a special #SolarEclipse ride. Nice initiative!"

What did it feel like to see the eclipse? Here's a nice description from Ralph Wilkins, of the London-based Baker Street Irregular Astronomers, who watched events unfold outside a school in Hambrook, South Gloucestershire.

He said: "The sky started clearing just after first contact and we were able to watch the moon glide in front of the sun.

"It was a unique experience - eerie is the right word for it. The shadows started to sharpen and everything began to develop this yellowish hue.

"Whenever there's a solar eclipse in the UK you tend to get cloud, so to be treated to clear skies was really wonderful. It really was beautiful. We were all thrilled."

Full daylight returns to Svalbard, Norway, about one hour after totality.

A combination of eclipse images from Gaiberg near Heidelberg, southwestern Germany

A collage of eclipse images from Gaiberg near Heidelberg, south-western Germany, as the Moon covered the Sun.

Get in touch


Russell Hawker in Winchester emails: Not all parts of the UK are enjoying a view of the solar eclipse. We are having to use our imagination and picture what the eclipse would look like had the sky been clear.

Are there eclipses on other planets?

In order to have a solar eclipse a planet needs to have a moon. So planets like Venus and Mercury, with no moon, will never experience one.

Eclipses on other planets vary depending on the moon and planet combination. Mars' moons are quite small, so only create partial eclipses.

All of the giant planets in our Solar System - Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune - have substantial moons and can experience eclipses. Eclipses are particularly common on Jupiter, since its moons orbit in the same plane with the Sun.

This remarkable image shows the shadows cast on Jupiter by two of its moons.

NASA, ESA and the Hubble Heritage Team

[Image: NASA, ESA and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)]

The total solar eclipse at Svalbard, Norway

Some of the most dramatic images of the eclipse have come from Svalbard, in Norway, which experienced totality at around 10:12 GMT.

In the UK, the clearest views of the partial eclipse were from Wales, parts of the West Country, the Midlands and eastern Scotland around Edinburgh.

Elsewhere, it was experienced as an abnormal level of darkness - and we've also had reports of birds falling silent and flocking to trees, confused by the fading light.

As well as the solar eclipse, today is marked by a super moon and a spring equinox. Watch the BBC Weather video

here to explain what the equinox means.

Cold and "spooky" - but worth it. That's what spectators in Newlyn told BBC reporter Jonathan Maguire in Newlyn on the BBC News Channel.