The Armagh Observatory (see star.arm.ac.uk) is the oldest continuously functioning astronomical research institute in Great Britain and Ireland, founded by Archbishop Richard Robinson in 1790 as part of his dream to see a University in the City of Armagh. It stands close to the centre of the City of Armagh together with the Armagh Planetarium in approximately 14 acres of attractive, landscaped grounds that are managed by the Observatory and which include a scale model of the solar system and the Universe known as the Armagh Astropark.
The principal function of the Armagh Observatory, which is a tertiary-level institution funded by the Northern Ireland Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure (DCAL), is to undertake original research of a world-class academic standard which broadens and expands our understanding of astronomy and related sciences. Current key programmes focus on stellar astrophysics, solar system astronomy, the Sun, Sun-Earth relationships including climate, and the Near-Earth Object hazard to civilization. The Observatory also maintains a unique 200-year long meteorological record and data-bank (climate.arm.ac.uk), one of the longest in the world from a single site.