Large swathes of the UK were resplendent in ethereal light last night as Aurora Borealis – more commonly known as the Northern Lights – swept across the night-sky. From Northern Island to Oxfordshire, the dark receded to make way for vivid purples, greens and blue – a natural phenomenon that occurs when electrically-charged particles from the Sun enter the Earth’s atmosphere. The Met Office said that the conditions which made for such an exhilarating display of nature’s greatest light-show were “a lucky combination” of “enhanced solar winds” and particles travelling at “higher speeds” than normal. As the spectacle passed, amateur photographers across the UK were snapping their own beautiful representations of the astonishing Aurora. According to studies, to increase your chances of seeing the spectacle first-hand, it’s advisable to get outside between 8pm and 12 am – or “magnetic midnight” as it’s known in the business – and move away from heavily populated areas where light pollution may affect your viewing experience. Although the part of the geomagnetic storm that is most favourable for viewing conditions has passed, glimpses of the Lights should still be visible at times tonight – saving potential shutterbugs the cost of a return trip to Scandinavia in favour of catching the wilds of Cumbria dappled in a spell-binding, heavenly glow.