kiracatgirl writes: The Royal Astronomical Society (RAS) in the UK has received unfortunate news. Apparently, the Science and Technology Facilities council (STFC) have decided to withdraw the UK from the Gemini Observatory, and the RAS is quite upset. According to their press release, "The Royal Astronomical Society is shocked by the STFC's announcement of withdrawal from the Gemini Observatory." The RAS also states that despite the UK astronomers having access to excellent facilities comparable to the Gemini Observatories, "the Gemini North telescope in Hawaii is crucial for UK astronomers to remain in the front rank of international astronomy." In addition, the president of RAS, Professor Michael Rowan-Robinson gives his own statement: "This decision is a serious mistake and a shock to all of us. If it goes ahead it will deny UK scientists access to large telescopes in the northern hemisphere and hinder their ability to study almost half the sky. I call on the STFC to rethink this proposal."