|Born||13 December 1946|
|Education||MA, Natural Sciences, University of Cambridge, 1968
PhD, Science and Technology, University College London, 1995
|Occupation||Writer, historian of science|
Nicholas Kollerstrom (born 13 December 1946) is an English writer and historian of science. Formerly an honorary research fellow at University College London (UCL) and BBC lunar gardening correspondent, he is the author of several books, including Gardening and Planting by the Moon (an annual series beginning in 1980), Newton's Forgotten Lunar Theory (2000), Crop Circles (2002), and Terror on the Tube (2009). He has also written entries for the Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers.
Kollerstrom has been involved in a variety of issues as a political activist. In 1986 he co-founded the Belgrano Action Group after the sinking of the ARA General Belgrano by the British Navy during the Falklands War, and in 2007 argued that the 7 July 2005 London bombings had not been carried out by the men accused of them. UCL withdrew his fellowship in 2008 after he posted material about the Auschwitz concentration camp on websites known for Holocaust denial.
Education and career
Kollerstrom attended Corpus Christi College, Cambridge from 1965, obtaining his BA in natural sciences in 1968 (promoted to MA in 1973), with a focus on the history and philosophy of science. He worked as a physics teacher before becoming a graduate student in science and technology at University College London (UCL).
Interested in the effect of the sun, moon and planets on plant growth, he served as the BBC's lunar gardening correspondent, and in 1980 his Gardening and Planting by the Moon was published, the first of an annual series. He was awarded his PhD in 1995 for a thesis entitled The Achievement of Newton's "Theory of the Moon's Motion" of 1702. UCL also awarded him an honorary research fellowship.
In 1999 Kollerstrom received a grant from the Royal Astronomical Society to work on the classification of correspondence related to the discovery of Neptune, and in 2004 concluded in an article in Scientific American that the British had wrongly taken credit for it. His book Newton's Forgotten Lunar Theory: His Contribution to the Quest for Longitude was published in 2000. In 2003 he wrote in BMC Psychiatry about the effect of the moon on human behaviour.
Kollerstrom has been active in political campaigns in the UK since the 1980s. In 1985 he co-founded the London Nuclear Warfare Tribunal, which sought to question the legality of nuclear weapons. The following year he became a founding member of the Belgrano Action Group, set up in protest at the sinking of the Argentine ship, the ARA General Belgrano, by the British Navy during the 1982 Falklands War. The group held an informal public inquiry in November 1986 at Hampstead Town Hall, addressed by Tam Dalyell and Clive Ponting, among others. In 1989 Kollerstrom stood as a Green Party candidate for East Guildford in the Surrey County Council election.
In the 2000s he became involved with the 911 truth movement and opposition to the Iraq War. As a member of the Institute for Law and Peace, he co-founded the Legal Inquiry Steering Group in 2002, a citizens' tribunal that challenged the war's legality. In 2006 he appeared in a video by David Shayler, in which he argued that the men accused of the 7 July 2005 London bombings had not carried out the attack. During his research into the bombing, Kollerstrom discovered that the train to London the bombers were at first said to have travelled on that morning had been cancelled, which led the government to correct the official account. His book on the subject, Terror on the Tube: Behind the Veil of 7/7, An Investigation, was published in 2009, and he was interviewed that year for the BBC series The Conspiracy Files.
Holocaust denial controversy
Kollerstrom began writing material in 2007 for Holocaust-denial publishers. His book Breaking the Spell: The Holocaust: Myth & Reality (2014) was published by Germar Rudolf's Holocaust-denial imprint in Sussex, Castle Hill Publishers, with a foreword by James H. Fetzer, co-founder of Scholars for 9/11 Truth.
UCL removed Kollerstrom's honorary fellowship in April 2008 after articles of his appeared on websites known for Holocaust denial. In 2007, on the Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust (CODOH) website, Kollerstrom wrote that one million, not six million, Jews had died in the Holocaust, and that gas chambers had operated in Auschwitz only for the purpose of disinfection. In March 2008 he wrote in Smith's report, a newsletter published by CODOH's co-founder Bradley Smith, that Auschwitz had had art classes, a well-stocked library for inmates, and an elegant swimming pool where inmates would sunbathe at weekends while watching water polo.
Responding to the loss of his fellowship, Kollerstrom said he had no interest in the Nazi movement, had always belonged to groups like the Green Party, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and Respect party, and had been accused of a "thought-crime." Historian of science Noel Swerdlow suggested in Isis in 2010 that, because Kollerstrom had written entries for the Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers on John Couch Adams, John Flamsteed and Isaac Newton, the publishers should withdraw the book and replace those entries. Swerdlow wrote of Kollerstrom:
His pronouncements are readily available on various websites, including the Committee for Open Discussion of the Holocaust and Iranian Press TV, both in his own articles and in audio and video interviews. As far as I can tell, he has nothing original to say, although he seems to think he has .... His treatment of Jews in general is virulent, holding that it was not the Nazis who declared war against the Jews but “international Jewish organizations” that declared war against the Nazis in 1933 and 1939, all supported by links to strident Jew-hating websites, which return the compliment by posting his articles.
- (1980) with Simon Best, Lunar Planting Manual 1980-81, W Foulsham & Co Ltd. ISBN 0-572-01059-1
- (1980) Gardening and Planting by the Moon, an annual series.
- (1982) Lead on the Brain: A Plain Guide to Britain's No. 1 Pollutant, Wildwood House. ISBN 0-7045-0476-6
- (1984) Astrochemistry: A Study of Metal-planet Affinities, Emergence Press. ISBN 0-946937-00-1
- (1988) with George Farebrother (eds.), The Unnecessary War: Proceedings of the Belgrano Inquiry, November 7/8th 1986, The Belgrano Action Group, Spokesman Press.
- (1993) The Metal-Planet Relationship: A Study of Celestial Influence, Borderland Sciences Research Foundation. ISBN 0-945685-14-9
- (1994) with Mike O'Neill, The Eureka Effect: Astrology of Scientific Discovery, Auriel, 1994.
- (1995) The Achievement of Newton's 'Theory of the Moon's Motion' of 1702, PhD dissertation, University of London.
- (2000) Newton's Forgotten Lunar Theory, Green Lion Press. ISBN 1-888009-08-X
- (2002) Crop Circles: The Hidden Form, Wessex Books. ISBN 1-903035-11-2
- (2003) with George Farebrother (eds.), The Case against War: The Essential Legal Inquiries, Opinions and Judgements Concerning War in Iraq, Legal Inquiry Steering Group, with a preface by Nicholas Kollerstorm and Mark Levine (available here).
- (2004) with Nicholas Campion (eds.), Galileo's Astrology, HR Wallingford Ltd. ISBN 1-898485-08-9
- (2009) Terror on the Tube: Behind the Veil of 7/7, An Investigation, Progressive Press. ISBN 1-61577-007-0
- (2009) Venus, the Path of Beauty, New Alchemy Press.
- (2013) Farmer's Moon, New Alchemy Press.
- (2013) Interface: Astronomical Essays for Astrologers, New Alchemy Press.
- (2013) Eureka: The Celestial Pattern at Times of Historic Inspiration, New Alchemy Press.
- (2014) The Secrets of the Seven Metals: A Bridge Between Heaven and Earth, New Alchemy Press.
- (2014) Breaking the Spell. The Holocaust: Myth & Reality, Castle Hill Publishers.
- (1980) "The Lawther Report: Whitewashing Leaded Petrol", The Ecologist, 10(6/7), July/Aug/Sept, pp. 246–249.
- (1991) "Crabtree's Venus-Transit Measurement", Quarterly Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society, 32, 1991, p. 51.
- (1992) "Thomas Simpson and 'Newton's method of approximation': An enduring myth", British Journal for the History of Science, 25, pp. 347–354.
- (1995) with Bernard D. Yallop, "Flamsteed's Lunar Data 1692–95, Sent to Newton," Journal for the History of Astronomy, 26, pp. 237–246.
- (1999) "The Path of Halley's Comet, and Newton's Late Apprehension of the Law of Gravity," Annals of Science, 56(4), pp. 331–356.
- (2000) "How Newton inspired China's calendar," Astronomy & Geophysics, 41(5), pp. 5.21-5.23.
- (2000), with C. Power, "The influence of the lunar cycle on fertility on two thoroughbred studfarms," Equine Veterinary Journal, 32(1), January, pp. 75–77. PubMed
- (2002) "Newton, Halley and Uranus", Astrological Journal, August.
- (2003) "Galileo as Believer", Culture and Cosmos, 7(1), Spring/Summer.
- (2003) with Beverly Steffert, "Sex difference in response to stress by lunar month: A pilot study of four years' crisis-call frequency", BMC Psychiatry, 3(20), 10 December. PubMed
- (2003) "Recovering the Neptune files," Astronomy & Geophysics, 2003, 44(5), pp. 5.23-5.24.
- (2004) with William Sheehan, Craig B. Waff, "The Case of the Pilfered Planet: Did the British steal Neptune?", Scientific American, 291(6), December, pp. 92–99. PubMed
- (2004) "Galileo's first trial", Astronomy Now, 18(7), pp. 33–36.
- (2004) "Galileo and the new star", Astronomy Now, 18(10), pp. 58–59.
- (2004) "Lunar Effect on Thoroughbred Mare Fertility: An Analysis of 14 Years of Data, 1986–1999," Biological Rhythm Research, 35(4), pp. 317–327.
- (2004) "William Crabtree's Venus transit observation", Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union, IAUC196, pp. 34–40. Also in D. W. Kurtz (ed.), Transits of Venus: New Views of the Solar System and Galaxy, Cambridge University Press, 2005, p. 34ff.
- (2005) "Acropolis Width and Ancient Geodesy", International Journal of Metrology, Oct/Nov/Dec.
- (2006) "John Herschel on the Discovery of Neptune", Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage, 9(2), pp. 151–158.
- (2007) "Decoding the Antikythera Mechanism", Astronomy Now, 21(3), pp. 32–35.
- (2007) "Adams, John Couch,""Flamsteed, John," and "Newton, Isaac," in Thomas Hockey, et al (eds.), Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Springer.
- "Dr Nicholas Kollerstrom", UCL News, 22 April 2008.
Daniella Peled, "College rejects Shoah denier", The Jewish Chronicle, 24 April 2008.
- Cambridge University Reporter, 1968: Kollerstrom matriculated in Michaelmas Term 1965 at Corpus Christi College. He was awarded a BA on 21 June 1968, and an MA on 20 October 1973. MA is awarded as a mark of status within the university, not by examination.
- "Nick Kollerstrom", Foulsham Publishing, accessed 26 November 2009.
- Nicholas Kollerstrom, Gardening and Planting by the Moon, W. Foulsham & Co Ltd, annual series from 1980 to the present; the cover of the 2009 edition calls the author "BBC's Lunar Gardening Correspondent."
Also see Nicholas Kollerstrom, "Gardening and Planting by the Moon", personal website.
- "Nicholas Kollerstrom", University College London, June 2005; Nicholas Kollerstrom, The Achievement of Newton's 'Theory of the Moon's Motion' of 1702, PhD dissertation, University of London, 1995.
- "Nicholas Kollerstrom", UCL Department of Science and Technology Studies.
- Christine McGourty, "Lost letters' Neptune revelations", BBC News, 10 April 2003.
William Sheehan, Nicholas Kollerstrom, Craig B. Waff, "The Case of the Pilfered Planet", Scientific American, 22 November 2004.
Robin McKie, "Revealed: how Britain put the spin on Neptune", The Observer, 12 December 2004.
Nicholas Kollerstrom, "John Herschel on the Discovery of Neptune", Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage, 9(2), 2006, pp. 151–158.
- Kurt Smith, "Newton’s Forgotten Lunar Theory: His Contribution to the Quest for Longitude, by Nicholas Kollerstrom", Isis, 96(3), September 2005, pp. 437–438.
- Nicholas Kollerstrom, Beverly Steffert, "Sex difference in response to stress by lunar month: A pilot study of four years' crisis-call frequency", BMC Psychiatry, 3(20), 10 December 2003. PubMed
- Geoffrey Darnton (ed.), The Bomb and the Law, The Alva and Gunnar Myrdal Foundation, Stockholm, 1989; "Convenors", London Nuclear Warfare Tribunal.
- Nicholas Kollerstrom and George Farebrother (eds.), The Unnecessary War: Proceedings of the Belgrano Inquiry, November 7/8th 1986, The Belgrano Action Group, Spokesman Press, 1988; "Introduction", Belgrano Inquiry.
- Nicholas Kollerstrom, "Brief Bio of a Peace Activist", terroronthetube.co.uk.
- Nick Kollerstrom, "A Brief Bio of a Truth Activist", Terror on the Tube, accessed 26 November 2009.
- Nicholas Kollerstrom and George Farebrother (eds.), The Case against War: The Essential Legal Inquiries, Opinions and Judgements Concerning War in Iraq, The Legal Inquiry Steering Group, 2003 (available here), pp. 5–6, 268.
- David Aaronovitch, "Red and green meet brownshirts", The Jewish Chronicle, 1 May 2008.
- "7/7", BBC Conspiracy Files, 2008, courtesy of YouTube, from 17:18 mins.
- Robert Mendick and Jonny Paul, "7/7 was an MI5 plot, Holocaust denier claims in BBC film", Evening Standard, 10 June 2008; "7/7", BBC Conspiracy Files, 2008, courtesy of YouTube.
- Oliver Kamm, "'Respectable' revisionists", The Jewish Chronicle, 11 December 2014; for Castle Hill, also see Stephen E. Atkins, Holocaust Denial as an International Movement, ABC-CLIO, 2009, p. 113.
- Nicholas Kollerstrom, "The Auschwitz 'Gas Chamber' Illusion", Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust, June 2007.
- Nicholas Kollerstrom, "School Trips to Auschwitz", Smith's Report on the Holocaust Controversy, No. 148, March 2008, pp. 3–4: "Let us hope the schoolchildren visitors are properly taught about the elegant swimming-pool at Auschwitz, built by the inmates, who would sunbathe there on Saturday and Sunday afternoons while watching the water-polo matches; and shown the paintings from its art class, which still exist; and told about the camp library which had some forty-five thousand volumes for inmates to choose from, plus a range of periodicals; and the six camp orchestras at Auschwitz/Birkenau, its theatrical performances, including a children's opera, the weekly camp cinema, and even the special brothel established there. Let's hope they are shown postcards written from Auschwitz, some of which still exist, where the postman would collect the mail twice-weekly. Thus the past may not always be quite, as we were told."
- Daniella Peled, "College rejects Shoah denier", The Jewish Chronicle, 24 April 2008.
- N. M. Swerdlow, "Thomas Hockey (Editor). The Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers", Isis, 101(1), March 2010, pp. 197–198.