THE LYRID METEOR SHOWER is a highly anticipated event for astronomers and space-lovers.

The event takes place every year and see shooting stars lighting up the sky- and you might be able to spot them from today.

Here’s everything you need to know about the Lyrid Meteor Shower this year- including the best star gazing spots in the North West to try and get a glimpse of them.

What is the Lyrid meteor shower?

The shower takes place around this time every year.

It is named after the Lyra constellation – the star which it appears to come from.

The meteors, which appear as shooting stars, are actually pieces of debris which fall from the Thatcher Comet. It is expected to return in 2276, after a 415-year orbital period.

When will the showers take place in 2021?

The meteors are active every year between April 16-25.

According to, the number of ‘shooting stars’ visible is set to increase from Monday (19 April) and are set to peak next Thursday (April 22).

However, if you are expecting to catch a glimpse be prepared to stay up late; astronomers recommend star gazing after midnight or just before dawn on April 22.

How can I spot the shower?

The Bolton News: A Lyrid meteor passes over the Lovell telescope at Jodrell Bank in Macclesfield, Cheshire (Peter Byrne/PA)A Lyrid meteor passes over the Lovell telescope at Jodrell Bank in Macclesfield, Cheshire (Peter Byrne/PA)

Viewers are advised to find an open space where there are no trees or high buildings, “particularly towards the east,” said Dr Gregory Brown, astronomer at the Royal Observatory Greenwich.

Then just lie on the ground, look across the sky, and wait.

“Looking almost east you can find the radial point (where the meteors will appear to come from) in the constellation of Hercules and near the bright star Vega in the constellation of Lyra,” said Mr Brown.

Astronomers discouraged using a telescope or binoculars as they will restrict the amount of sky that can be seen.

What’s the Met Office weather forecast?

According to current Met Office predictions, it’s set to be a little cloudy in the evenings between now and Thursday 22 April.

However, there are certain hours with limited cloud coverage.

It’s only partially cloudy between midnight-5am on Saturday and Sunday evening into the early hours of Monday are also set to be pretty clear.

It’s set to be completely clear at 4am on Monday and between 1am and 4am on Wednesday.

On Thursday (the peak of the meteor shower) there is a good chance you can see some shooting stars as its is only partially cloudy between 1am and 4am.

The best star-gazing spots in the North West

Bolton and wider parts of Greater Manchester might not be the best locations for stargazing, thanks to light pollution- but there are still some great spots in wider parts of the North West.

If you aren’t prepared to travel, you can always star gaze in your garden or secluded rural area to try and catch a glimpse of the shooting stars.

However, if you are dedicated to the cause and want to try and spot a shooting star, here are some of the best star-gazing spots in the North West as listed on and National Association for Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty:


  • Pendle Hill
  • Bowland Knotts in the Ribble Valley
  • The council car park in Slaidburn
  • Beacon Fell
  • Gisburn Forest, Tosside
  • Beacon Fell Centre, Preston
  • Caton Moor Windfarm, Lancaster
  • Grizedale Forest
  • Pilling Embankment, Wyre
  • Hoghton Towe, Preston


  • Blea Tarn Car Park, Ambleside
  • Bowness Knott Car Park, Ennerdale Bridge
  • Crummock Water Car Park, Cockermouth
  • Talkin Tarn Country Park, Brampton
  • Wasdale Head Country Park, Santon Bridge, Copeland


  • Delamere Forest Park, Northwich

Will you be trying to spot the Lyrid meteor shower?