Thank you Peter, David and Andy. All of your points and facts you’ve raised have been more than helpful, and have really made me think on what I really need, and what I don’t!
I am shying away now from a big refractor, soley because of portability. As I’ve already mentioned I think, I have two big old heavy dinosaurs sitting (in pieces) in my cupboard, that I’m unable to use because of lack of portability. For the record, one is a Charles Frank 6″ F/9 reflector, and the other, an 8.5″ F6 Newtonian, built by AE. So I don’t need to shell out a great deal of money to add a yet another telescope to the cupboard! You’ve all recommended a folded reflector, and with this in mind, I am now hankering towards a good sized Cassegrain, but not a closed tube design, mainly because of dewing on the corrector, and large central obstruction. If funds permit, I’d really like to avail myself of the Takahashi Mewlon 210. It’s a Dall Kirkham design, and the quality is second to none in my mind. I think it will still be portable, but will be on the limit, I understand that, but I want the mount to be substantial. Does anybody have any experience of the Mewlons? I once had the use of a fine Takahashi refractor, over 30 years ago, and I was truly amazed at the quality. I might have to go 2nd hand though 🙂 as I know that we’re talking megabucks!