The New Horizons flyer

During the first half of the noughties, my festival wingwoman – Katie Roberts – and I organised a series of parties in north London, including annual flagship summer bashes (colloquially: ‘Peteski’s Parties’). These would involve light shows, DJs, gazebos, cinema rooms, over 100 guests, a great deal of shared experience and take place across several days.

Every summer, Katie would design flyers to get attendees in the mood and intensify the collective anticipation. Over the years these flyers featured Barbarella, Dr Who and the cast of Dallas. The very last such party was held in May 2005 to celebrate my leaving the city. The very last flyer for that party is below.

Partygoers were not told this, but in addition to alluding to my departure, New Horizons was a reference to NASA’s interplanetary, robotic probe of that name, which was then being prepared for launch to Pluto.

New Horizons eventually left Earth on 19 January 2006 (at the fastest ever launch speed for a man-made object) and is due to conduct a flypast of Pluto on 14 July 2015. It will then carry out an exploration of the Kuiper belt. This will constitute the furthest direct exploration from our home world yet undertaken by the human race.

The flyer’s sunrise image (taken by NASA in 2005, and in my view the most beautiful photo to come out of the space programme) became the chosen cover image almost as soon as the book was conceived. The US space agency were kind enough to give us their permission for its use.

The New Horizons probe is mentioned several times in The Jolly Pilgrim.

Everything connects.

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