This museum dedicated to the Herschel family's achievements is based at the house in Bath where William Herschel discovered the planet Uranus, while observing from his garden using a telescope he had designed himself.
As well as being distinguished astronomers, William and his sister Caroline were both gifted musicians. In 1780 William was appointed director of the Bath orchestra and Caroline often appeared as a soprano soloist. Brothers Dietrich, Alexander and Jakob were also talented musicians.
William Herschel’s observations helped to double the size of the known Solar System. To mark his achievement he was awarded the Copley Medal, became a Fellow of the Royal Society and was made The King’s Astronomer by King George III.
More recently the late Sir Patrick Moore, who was the museum’s patron, described him as ‘the first man to give a reasonably correct picture of the shape of our star-system or galaxy, the best telescope-maker of his time and possibly the greatest observer who ever lived’.