Moon Landing 50th Anniversary: How Cornwall brought the moon to millions

Credit: NASA

In 1969 Neil Armstrong became the first man to set foot on the moon. Closer to home in Cornwall, Goonhilly Earth Station beamed those pictures to millions of eager eyes across the UK and Europe.

It took approximately six to seven seconds for the pictures to reach Cornwall. From there satellite dish 'Arthur', on the Lizard Peninsula, transmitted the famous footage of the Apollo 11 mission to 200 million people.

Arthur, the satellite dish, was built in 1962 and still stands proudly today. Credit: British Pathe
The first man on the moon was brought to millions of viewers by 'Arthur'. Credit: NASA

On the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, 'Arthur' is still in use today. The 1100 tonne concrete and steel structure sits on a giant turntable and can track at speeds of up to 120° per minute.

One of the people responsible for making sure all went to plan back in 1969 was Pip Greenway. He made up part of a small team at Goonhilly who brought the moon to millions.

Watch his story below:

Reflecting on the anniversary, Pip says: "If we messed up... an awful lot of people would have been very disappointed".

A small team of engineers worked on the transmission from Goonhilly. Credit: British Pathe

Today the influence of the moon landing 50 years ago still inspires generations to explore space, and Cornwall continues to play a crucial role in that.

Read more: Cornwall Spaceport could come to Newquay by end of 2020, says Virgin Orbit boss

Here's what schoolchildren in Truro make of the anniversary:

Read more about the 50th anniversary of the moon landing: