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A Leonid meteor shower will light up the skies over the UK this weekend

The Leonid meteor shower will light up the skies over the UK this weekend, giving stargazers a celestial spectacle.

The best time to view the shower will be between midnight and before dawn in the early hours of Saturday.

It is one of the largest annual meteor showers in the sky, typically features fast-moving, fast-moving meteors and is associated with Comet Tempel-Tuttle.

They seem to appear at the head of the Leo star constellations.

This happens when a small piece of debris left behind by the comet as it orbits the sun enters Earth’s atmosphere at around 70 km per second, before vaporizing and causing streaks of light.

No specialist equipment is required and the event can be seen with the naked eye. Stargazers are advised to be patient and find the darkest location possible for the best chance of seeing it.

The best shows can be seen in central, southern and eastern parts of the UK, the Met Office said, adding that it depends on breaks between showers.

Operational Meteorologist Dan Stroud said: “We have a waxing moon this weekend, so skies should be dark.

“There will be a band of wind and heavy rain moving across the country, but by the time the sun sets on Saturday, most of it should have dissipated, and there will be a few decent breaks between the showers.

“It will be random, but there is a chance that clear spells will occur, especially the farther east you are.”

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The shower will be visible throughout the sky, so those wishing to watch it are advised to find a large open space.

This will continue for several days after the initial event begins.

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