VIDEO: Sheffield residents unite to witness rare solar eclipse

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Persistent cloud cover threatened to rob South Yorkshire of a view of the partial eclipse...

But the sun managed to peek through the clouds giving thousands the chance to admire the first solar eclipse in 16 years.

The solar eclipse seen over Sheffield

The solar eclipse seen over Sheffield

The cloudy South Yorkshire skies darkened as 90 per cent of the sun was covered by the moon, an event not to be repeated on this scale in the UK until 2026.

The peak time to watch the rare astronomical event was about 9.35am yesterday.

Commuters on their way to work paused to gaze up at the skies, office workers left their desks to pop outside, keen photographers snapped away and schoolchildren ran out into their playgrounds to see science in action.

One school which got on board with the event was Bradfield, where eager young skywatchers followed the eclipse using a variety of safe methods to protect their eyes from the harmful rays.

Dr Katherine Inskip, from the department of physics and astronomy at the University of Sheffield, visited pupils at the school, where her husband works as a science teacher.

She said: “We wanted to get out here and give the children as good a chance of observing the eclipse as possible.

“We have used colanders, pin hole cameras, binocular projections and of course the eclipse glasses. But mostly we have been using the reflections off the school windows, which is a nice way of getting to see the sun in the various stages of the eclipse.

“It’s been brilliant – the children have been so enthused seeing how the sun has changed as the moon has moved across it. It’s been marvellous.”