Updated: Aug 25, 2019
Birmingham UFO Group Report
Rachel lives in Brighton and over the years has had some very interesting experiences. I met her at the International Irish UFO conference where I lectured in October 2009, and she let me know it would be fine to investigate and write up a report on these experiences. These will each be covered in separate sections.
July 1967 Father’s UFO Incident
Back in 1967 when Rachel was 14, she lived with her father Frank on Pier Avenue, Herne Bay, Kent. Frank had served in the Second World War and took early retirement at 53. They had a pet dog at the time named Painter. Her father was a very fit man and every evening liked to take Painter out for a long walk across Herne Bay golf course near to where they lived. He would usually set off around 6.00 pm and not come back till 7.30-8.00pm. The route to the golf course would take him past the nearby railyway station, via a tunnel under the tracks. One evening towards the end of July he set out on an evening walk much like usual. Rachel remembers the weather was good and there was a clear blue sky.
Map showing location of Pier Avenue and Herne Bay Golf Course:
Her father and the dog had been gone about half an hour, when suddenly he returned home. He let himself in and when Rachel saw him she was shocked by how both he and the dog looked. He was red faced and sweating, his eyes were bulging and his hair was messy. The dog was panting and looked to be completely out of breath with its tongue hanging right out. He walked past her and went into the lounge and collapsed into the armchair. The dog went to the middle of the lounge and collapsed on its side on the floor. Rachel asked her father what had happened and he said to her “I’ve just seen a UFO over the golf course but I’ve forgotten about it”. Rachel quizzed him about the statement but couldn’t get any more information out of him. Soon afterwards he took himself up to bed, despite the fact it was still early evening.
Herne Bay Golf Course:
Frank would regularly get up at 6am but the following morning he was late getting up. When he finally did come downstairs, Rachel asked him why he was up so late. He turned away from her and lifted his top up. Across one side of his back was a red blistered rash. When she asked him about it she found he could not remember going out to the golf course at all, and had no recollection of anything that had happened the previous evening.
Soon afterwards, Frank went to the doctor’s. Rachel does not remember what her father told her when he returned, but assumes that the doctor could not identify the cause.
Several days later, Rachel remembers reading an article in the local newspaper that said that many people had contacted the police and said that they saw a large silver coloured cigar-shaped object hovering over Herne Bay Golf Course on the same evening as the incident had taken place. When she showed her father the article he just said it was a load of rubbish. Rachel wishes she had kept this article at the time. Years later when she had more of an interest in the subject of UFOs, she attempted to find the article but was not able to track it down.
Since the incident till the end of his life, Frank would never entertain the notion that he had been in close proximity with a UFO and put the rash down to natural causes. However, despite not having an interest in the subject at all, her father would occasionally come out with unusual questions about the universe and whether other races existed elsewhere. He only did this after the incident, never before. Also for the rest of his life, he was highly emotional and would get angry very easily. This shift in his personality seemed to be directly related to what had taken place.
July 2005 UFO Sighting
In 2005 Rachel was now living in her flat on John Street, Brighton. The flat is on the side of a hill and from it she has a great view over the valley in which Brighton has been built up. In recent years she has had health issues with her joints, which often cause her a lot of pain. One Wednesday evening in July she was in agony so decided to go to bed at 9pm to sleep it off.
Map showing location of John Street:
She awoke at 11.45pm and went to get a drink. She decided to open the living room window. When she looked out of the window she was greet ed by an amazing sight. She saw what looked like a large orange sphere in the sky to the North West. It had a small black circle in the middle of it and was glowing, but not brightly. Rachel estimates it was at least 50 feet across, and from her viewpoint looked as big as the sun does. The object was about 1000 feet high and below the cloud layer. It was moving on a direct course in a South Easterly direction, not extremely fast, but fast enough to appear powered.
Drawing of the object based on witness description:
As she watched the object suddenly came to a halt. After several seconds it then moved to the right a short distance. It then moved back to it’s original position and remained still again. A few seconds later it continued moving on it’s original course. Rachel briefly lost sight of it behind another block of flats and then it reappeared from the other side, proving that it was far away from her and not a small object in close proximity. She continued to watch, captivated by the object. Suddenly it changed course and moved straight upwards, a bit faster than it had been moving beforehand. It was soon lost in the cloud and Rachel did not see the object again.
Rachel felt that the object had appeared to be looking for something. Looking back at the incident she feels it was an unusual craft of some kind, perhaps inter-dimensional, and definitely under intelligent control. A very unusual aspect of the sighting is that when she thinks back to it she sees it in daylight, but it was 11.45pm at night so the sky must really have been dark. Does this perhaps suggest that there was bright light coming from the object at the time? Or could it be that she was so transfixed on the object she did not notice the surroundings? There have been a number of other UFO and crop formation sightings where this same thing has been reported.
The apparent size of the object, and the interesting movement patterns seen, certainly tend to dismiss the possibility the object was a balloon, inflatable or Chinese lantern. Rachel is well aware of what Chinese lanterns look like after dark. Obviously it could not have been a meteorite and it seems unlikely an Earth Light would be the cause as these do not tend to appear over urban areas. It is also unlikely it was some sort of secret military craft due to its appearance - and why would they fly it right over Brighton in direct view of everyone? This seems to be a genuine sighting of a highly unusual and controlled object.
Orange Orb Sightings
In recent years, Chinese lanterns have become very popular in Brighton and are often seen being launched on the sea front. Rachel is sure that some of the UFO sightings reported in the area have been down to these. However on four different occasions while out walking, she has seen orange orbs of light appear a couple of miles out to sea. These orbs have also seemed to appear from nowhere about 500 feet up in the sky rather than right down at sea level. They then move upward, moving around each other, until they fade and are lost from sight. On one particular occasion, they appeared to be moving in a South Easterly direction even though the wind was blowing to the South West at the time.
Brighton sea front:
It is most likely that these are Chinese lanterns, perhaps being launched from party cruise boats. They may drift towards the coast and when first launched are too far away to be visible but then seem to suddenly appear. This is just a theory, but it seems a good possibility given the appearance of the orbs, their movement patterns and the popularity of lanterns in the area. The ones which appeared to be heading in a different direction to the wind could have been caught in a different air current further out to sea, due to the distance that they were being viewed from this cannot be ruled out. Local newspapers and the airport have commented on the orange orbs numerous times, and although many of the sightings reported are probably caused by lanterns, there are certainly other UFO sightings around Brighton which remain unexplained.
As you can see, Rachel has had some fascinating experiences, both directly and indirectly through her father. She is sincere about these incidents and they have certainly contributed towards her beliefs in the UFO phenomenon. After speaking with Rachel numerous times I have no doubt she is telling me the truth about her experiences. She has said she will keep in touch and keep me informed of any other unusual events which take place.
Copyright Dave Hodrien 2009