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April/May 2018 – Benidorm, Spain – Cylindrical UFO Sighting

Birmingham UFO Group Case Report

Author: Dave Hodrien

Release Date: 09/03/2022

In late February 2022 gentleman Richard Paul Muir mentioned on Facebook a UFO sighting he had while on holiday back in 2018. I got in touch to ask him about what happened in more depth.

Sighting Details

In either between April to May of 2018 when Richard was 52 he and his partner Jill were on holiday in Benidorm, Spain. They were at the Mediterraneo apartments alongside Levante Beach on the south edge of the city. Richard is an avid bird watcher and he informed me that the location is perfect for this, with many sea birds always present in the area.

Aerial map of Levante Beach with Mediterraneo apartments indicated
Photograph of the Mediterraneo apartments

One early evening Richard was out on the balcony of their apartment watching birds through binoculars. Jill was also present. It was very clear weather with not a cloud in the sky. The sun had not yet started to set.

Suddenly Jill exclaimed “What on earth’s that?!” Looking towards the South East in the direction his wife was looking, Richard saw an unusual object hovering out over the bay. It was large and cylindrical in shape, similar to a Calor gas canister, and appeared to be vertically positioned. The lower part of it was beige in colour, the upper part more burgundy. At the top of the object there was a golden glow which was changing shape like a fire. Richard estimates that the UFO was approximately 50 feet in height and 15 feet across. The fiery glow at the top seemed to be 2-3 feet in height.

Witness drawing of the cylindrical UFO

The object was motionless in the air, and appeared to be at a height of 1000 feet, roughly half a mile out to sea. He stared at it for about 15 seconds, trying to work out what it was. Jill then suggested he should attempt to capture a photograph of it. Richard had his camera with him but it was on the balcony table, so he had to briefly cease looking at the object in order to grab it.

Ground level photograph of Levante Beach in the direction the UFO was seen

He was only looking away for 4 seconds but when he looked back the object had completely vanished! There was no clouds it could have drifted behind, it was just gone. Jill had also been looking away at this moment. Both witnesses were amazed at what they had just seen and the fact it had seemingly disappeared in a brief moment.

Richard continued to search the sky through his binoculars for a short while, but the object did not reappear.

Sighting Analysis

This is an unusual sighting with some hard to explain aspects. The object was clearly not a normal aircraft of any kind. It was hovering stationary in the sky which means it cannot have been a plane, and it’s appearance was vastly different to that of a distant helicopter or drone.

Upon hearing the description of the object I wondered if it was some kind of lit inflatable or sky lantern, with the glow on the top coming from a flame inside the upper part of the object. This would also explain the colour shift from beige to burgundy.

Richard says that due to his hobby of bird watching he is a very good judge of the distance and size of objects seen in the sky. He is convinced that the object was very large in size. He has also launched sky lanterns before and knows how they look at different distances. Therefore it seems unlikely it was one of these.

An unusual-shaped hot air balloon also seems unlikely as this would have the glow at the base near the basket rather than at the top. I asked Richard if the fiery glow at the top could have been caused by sunlight glinting off it. He says that this seems unlikely as it was a fiery orange in colour and the sun was not setting at the time.

A large lit inflatable of some kind could have been a possibility. However if it was this then how did it manage to vanish in a clear sky over a period of 4 seconds? It was still daylight so even if the fire inside the object had gone out it still would have logically been visible. The hot air from the fire would have been keeping the object aloft but if it had started to descend at this point, it surely could not have dropped 1000 feet in a few seconds? Lanterns can sometimes catch alight and burn up, again making them look like they have vanished, but the brief time Richard looked away again makes this seem very improbable.

At present this sighting is anomalous due to both the unusual appearance of the object, and the extremely fast time it took to disappear from view.

In speaking with Richard about this incident, he also described having a previous sighting of multiple UFOs alongside many other witnesses at Huddersfield in the early 1980s. As it is un-connected to this sighting I have written it up as a separate case report. Click here to go to this report.

Copyright Dave Hodrien 2022



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