Stargazers delighted by blood-red 'supermoon' eclipse

The moon rises through the mist of the north east coast. Credit: PA Wire

Stargazers across the UK were treated to a blood red "supermoon" in the skies above Britain for the first time in 30 years.

The light created from a lunar eclipse with the moon near to its closest point to the Earth delighted amateur astronomers and photographers.

The moon turned a deep rusty red as it reflected sunlight being scattered by the Earth's atmosphere.

The spectacle began to unfold from 1.10am in the UK, with the "total" phase - when the moon is completely in shadow - lasting from 3.11am to 4.24am.

The last time this coincided with a lunar eclipse, when the moon is covered by the Earth's shadow, was in 1982 and the event will not be repeated until 2033.

A timelapse of the supermoon seen from Kent posted on Twitter. Credit: @Amar_sian

The video below was sent to ITV News by Chris Heath and shows the progress from full eclipse to partial eclipse, filmed from Congleton, Cheshire.

What is a supermoon eclipse?

A supermoon happens when the moon reaches its full phase in the closest point of its orbit to Earth.

Because of its proximity to Earth at this stage, the moon appears larger than usual in the sky.

A lunar eclipse takes place when the sun, Earth and moon are all lined up and the moon is in the Earth's shadow.

When a supermoon and lunar eclipse happen at the same time, this is known as a supermoon eclipse.

Credit: ITV News

A supermoon or a lunar eclipse by themselves are not rare, but they do not occur together very often.

Since 1900, a supermoon eclipse has only been seen five times.

People watch a supermoon from the top of Glastonbury Tor as the earth's shadow completely covers the bright moon creating a total eclipse. Credit: Ben Birchall/PA Wire

People were able to view the blood-red eclipse from North America, South America, West Africa and Western Europe.