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Deconstructing the Oliver's Castle Incident

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posted on Apr, 4 2012 @ 10:46 AM
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A recent thread about crop circles inspired me to go back and take a closer look at the Oliver's Castle case. I head about it a few years ago and didn't really look into it very deeply but over the years I've developed a habit of looking very deeply into any case which seems to be surrounded in obscurities and conflicting information. A lot of the time I have found that these types controversial cases are prime targets of disinformation campaigns and it seems this case is a classic example.


The Oliver's Castle Video

Google Video Link

In August 1996 John Weyleigh, a student, recorded a short video film, while camping in south England at Oliver's Castle, that shows the creation of a crop circle shaped like a snowflake. Four swiftly moving light balls are clearly visible, circling above the formating crop circle. Most professional videolaboratories, where the tape was examined, certify that the film is "clean" and that it is unlikely that the video was edited with computer.


On the same morning that he captured this event (11th of August 1996), it is said that he went home and made a copy of the video, put the original in a safe place, then travelled into town to show off his video at a local pub which was known to be a popular gathering place of many UFO researches. Only a few hours after the crop circle appeared (yes the circle was confirmed, measured and photographed) he was already showing off video footage which he purported showed the actual formation of the crop circle (pic below).




On the morning of Sunday, 11 August 1996, a man calling himself John Weyleigh, steps into the Barge Inn (Honeystreet, Alton Barnes, Wiltshire, UK) and shows to the few people present a piece of video that would become known as the Oliver’s Castle footage. Weyleigh tells the people in the pub that he had spent the night on the ancient hill fort named Oliver’s Castle and that he woke up early in the morning witnessing balls of light (BOLs) floating over a field below. He had grabbed his video camera that was with him in his sleeping bag and filmed the BOLs while still laying on the ground in the sleeping bag.

An Angle to Oliver's Castle 1996


We will come back to the above article in a moment but for now lets focus on the video. After doing some research it appears that yes, countless video editing experts have examined this footage and concluded that it must either be real, or constructed by a team of experts with lots of time on their hands. Keep in mind that he was in possession of this video and playing it in a pub merely hours after the crop circle had appeared in the field. The following excerpts are taken from this article.


Jim's main responsibility is setting up supercomputer networks. He uses a supercomputer to analyse video footage when he deems it necessary. [The Cray, however, was not used to evaluate the OC videotape.] His work also entails very advanced image processing. He is the 'expert' analyst the national television programs *Sightings* and *Unsolved Mysteries*, among others, call upon to verify the 'purity' of, in particular, UFO tapes and photos. He's been doing this work for twenty years.

Jim made it clear to me that while it might be possible for a team of people with the experience, the appropriate equipment, *and the time* to come up with a *similar* video, he stated emphatically that THIS tape showed no signs of computer enhancement, splicing, depth cueing, or fields-per-frame anomalies. He used terms like 'subcarrier' and 'blanking pulse' to describe facets of his analysis. He said the Balls Of Light (BOLs) were NOT spherical but were appropriately distorted (as actual movement would distort them as opposed to animation-generated movement). [Patrick's evaluation of the BOLs (below) not only agrees with Jim's, but goes even further - see his startling analysis on his website!]


A second analysis of this tape was completed by 'special effects expert' Laurel Click, at the request of the Strange Universe national television program. Laurel works at a studio in California. Her conclusions were basically the same as Jim's: the tape shows no signs of tampering or computer enhancement, and she's unable to even guess how it might have been created. She stated that it would probably take a team of highly qualified computer and video experts MANY hours to produce similar footage - if it were indeed possible at all. In her professional opinion, the tape offers no indication of artificiality.


The following is taken from a third analyst's HomePage. In the excerpts below, Patrick Wilson ( patrickw@mistral.co.uk) tells who he is, and what he does:

I compose and record my own [record] albums. I also do soundtracks for TV and films pretty much full time. Being a keen '3D Modeller' I have included a page of my Computer Graphics. These are mostly of landscapes, sometimes with a UFO element.

I digitised [the OCVid] using a Miromotion video capture board on a Macintosh9500/200. I am pretty sure that the film is not faked having examined the film frame by frame. I reckon it would be very hard to draw moving objects onto the frames with such accuracy *and with consistent lighting* [emphasis ilyes']. Not to mention that the objects' motion paths [are] integral to the scene despite camera wobble etc. There are 400 frames in the 16 seconds of action (at 25fps).


And here's an interview with another video expert named Ralph McCarron:


My research started by reading a bunch of ATS threads on the subject and I was quick to find that the Oliver's Castle video had been debunked viciously by many different people. I read many posts where people claimed John had confessed on camera that he had hoaxed the whole thing. Yet, after an exhaustive search, it turns out that no such confession video exists anywhere on the internet. In fact, the whole claim had been manifested by one man named Colin Andrews as early as 1998.


Today I have again tried to obtain permission to make copies of the video sent to me, showing John Wabe confessing to fraudulently making the Oliver's Castle video. My request has been apologetically refused, but I have been told that I can state who the owners of the material are and where I obtained the out cuts from. Nippon Television based at their headquarters in Tokyo sent the material at my request. It was sent on the understanding it was for my on going investigation into the film allegedly showing small UFOs making crop circles.

The Oliver's Castle video fraud: John Wabe's filmed confession to be aired by Nippon TV


To this day, no such confession video has ever been released. However, there was a doco made by National Geographic in 2005 with a man who claims to be John Weyleigh, and there's about 5 seconds of footage where he confesses that the whole thing was a prank to "see how people would react if that footage was placed in front of them". However, this is not the same confession footage which was claimed to have existed as early as 1998, because it was filmed much later.
edit on 4-4-2012 by ChaoticOrder because: (no reason given)




posted on Apr, 4 2012 @ 10:46 AM
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You may also be wondering why this man is now suddenly being referred to as "John Wabe" instead of "John Weyleigh". The story goes that he was using an alias, and that his real surname was Wabe, and that he was not a student and that he actually worked for a production studio. However, the facts are that Weyleigh disappeared from the radar shortly after coming out with this footage and no one was able to contact him for a considerably long period of time.

(John Wabe as he appears in the Nat Geo segment
notice cloaking of appearance with hat and glasses)


Until one day this guy called John Wabe appeared on the scene claiming the whole thing was a hoax. He "just happened" to be walking past the crop circle and decided to film it and modify the footage in mere hours and then prank everyone to see how they would react. However, witnesses claim that Weyleigh visited the Barge Inn the day before and invited people to join him on an overnight camping trip but no one joined him. This would contradict Wabe's claim of passing by without a legitimate reason for being there. The original Weyleigh claimed to have camped their overnight.

Further scientific analysis can discredit several more claims made by Wabe's. You may have already read this article I said we would come back to, but if not you should do so now. Photographic analysis proves that the footage was taken in a different place from where Wabe's claimed it was taken. Apparently Wabe's claimed that he created the realistic shaking effect by recording the scene on a tall tripod (like shown in the Nat Geo vid) and adding the shake later. However, the evidence clearly shows that the shot must have been taken extremely close to the ground, as if the person filming was laying down.


We now have arrived at a very interesting situation.

1. The original footage was not shot from the tip, as John Wabe claimed, and;
2. The camera was positioned just above ground level and the height between the ground and the camera was insufficient for a tripod to fit. There was simply not enough space. The camera that filmed the Oliver’s Castle footage of 11 August 1996, could not have been mounted on a tripod. It had to be a handheld camera!

Both claims of John Wabe – filming from the tip and the camera mounted on a tripod – can simply not be true!

The claim made by John Weyleigh, that he was laying in his sleeping bag while filming, does hold!


Lets also briefly examine the other attempts made in the Nat Geo video to debunk this video (although they don't deserve to be addressed because they are so stupid). This so called "expert" named Ted Clay claims that's it's suspicious John didn't follow the balls of light, although it's clear any rational individual would keep focusing on the crop circle to see how it forms. It is ridiculous to think anyone would move the camera away from such an important event to capture orbs which have been captured hundreds of times.

His other claim that Johns words "that's amazing" don't "seem right", is nothing but a half-assed pseudo-scientific attempt to debunk the video because they can't legitimately prove it has been edited. If they could actually prove the video had been manipulated in a scientific manner they would have done so. But they couldn't. And that is saying something for a video recorded in 1996. Researches tried to replicate the video in 2006 and they couldn't even match this so called hoax video made in mere hours.

This whole thing reeks of disinformation and cover-ups to suppress one of the most important UFO videos in existence in my opinion. All these weak unsubstantiated claims, pitiful attempts at debunking, and character assassinations are the hallmarks of an organized disinformation campaign. I personally believe that the video is most likely real that "John Wabe" is an imposter claiming to be the real John Weyleigh. Many of his claims simply don't add up, whilst the claims of the original Weyleigh do fit the evidence.
edit on 4-4-2012 by ChaoticOrder because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 4 2012 @ 09:18 PM
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Very interesting take on this. As much as I want to believe the video, though, your conclusion is still inconclusive enough that I still can't come to a conclusion of my own that satisfies all my doubts.

Unfortunately, the passage of time is never on the side of the investigator. And the more time passes, the less likely we'll ever get to the bottom of it. I hate when that happens. It would be nice if everyone were just truthful and upright; if no egos were involved; if there were no agents trying to discredit the field; if there were no money or recognition to be had from hoaxing. In the end it's like the field of crop circles itself: No matter how many are authentic, the water has been muddied enough that there is no one clear, solid, "truth"-ful conclusion to be had....



posted on Apr, 4 2012 @ 10:55 PM
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reply to post by Ex_CT2
 



I still can't come to a conclusion of my own that satisfies all my doubts.

And what doubts are you left with exactly?


Unfortunately, the passage of time is never on the side of the investigator.

Yes that does seem to be the case, but not always. In some cases the longer you wait the more evidence that becomes available to analyze.



posted on Apr, 5 2012 @ 10:08 AM
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reply to post by ChaoticOrder
 


Wow thanks a lot! I never knew the details you presented and always assumed it was confessed to be a hoax. But now I just wonder what happened to the real guy... Poor chap. Saw too much. Recorded too much. Never heard from again! Remember this folks. Always find anonymous ways to release this kind of info. Of course, that can also make it harder to validate, but at least it will be out there, and you won't have to disappear like magic. Plus in his situation, he could've provided plenty of useful info without giving up his identity. Like that he was laying down as he recorded. The omission of the sleeping bag would prevent anyone who remembered him talking about his plans to go camping from pinpointing him as the cameraman. He could just tell his friends he got cold or chickened out or whatever and came home at 2 or 3am.



posted on Apr, 5 2012 @ 11:38 AM
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reply to post by 3n19m470
 



But now I just wonder what happened to the real guy... Poor chap.

Indeed. But there is always the slight chance Wabe is the real deal, even though he was caught lying about several things. I mean who really knows the truth when it comes to conspiracies like this. I wouldn't worry about it too much, there's nothing that can be done about it this late in the game.
edit on 5-4-2012 by ChaoticOrder because: (no reason given)





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