The 1909 Scareship flapcontinued
Reports of these airships invariably included stories of high power searchlights beaming onto the landscape below. This would hardly keep their presence secret.
It could be that Britain was preparing itself for the coming threat from Germany and so stories were placed in the press as propaganda. That seems a little far-fetched. The British press would never subject itself to such sensationalism and fabrication for its own agenda would it? Weapons of mass destruction? The pioneer of democracy would surely not stoop to such tactics?
1909 was not the last year that phantom airships were reported in Britain. There was an incident at Sheerness, Kent, in October 1912 where engine sounds were heard overhead and even provoked questions at Westminster. With tension between Britain and Germany at an all time high, it was suggested that a Zeppelin was involved.
On 27th November 1912 William Joynson-Hicks MP raised the matter in Parliament with the First Lord of the Admiralty, Winston Churchill. He confirmed that reports had been received, but said that subsequent investigations had not produced any rational explanation. Perhaps this piqued a long term interest in Churchill?
This was followed by dozens of sightings of mystery airships in February 1913 throughout the British Isles, at times witnessed by crowds of thousands of people. The start of the Great War saw another spate of homeland sightings in August 1914. The MoD (or War Office as it was then) even sent one of its precious few aircraft to search the Lake District for a foreign airship rumoured to be scouting the area.
Unconfirmed airship sightings continued during World War I over mainland Britain. Whilst some can be attributed to mistakes and paranoia the War Office could not ignore unexplained intrusions of their airspace. This would remain a concern, albeit one often concealed from the public, throughout the century.
The scareship cases illustrate how UFO sightings will often appear to a witness to be craft of a technology just slightly beyond the cutting edge of the day. But also remain something of a mystery as to what their origin was.
See also :
1922 Barmouth, Wales
On Sept. 11th 1922 in Barmouth, Wales, John Morris, steersman of the local lifeboat, and another witness saw what they thought was an aircraft falling, with ‘extraordinary slowness’, into the Irish Sea. They took a motorboat out to investigate but found nothing. There was no report immediately afterwards of any terrestrial aircraft having gone missing.
If there were de-bunkers around in the day then they would have surely classed this as a Chinese lantern or maybe because of the location and circumstances, an ‘Irish lantern’, being essentially the same thing just a bit slower. Joking apart this may be one of the earliest observations in Britain of USOs in the Irish Sea.
1934 New Forest, England
Late in the evening of July 14th 1934, French tourist, Paul Faiveley was returning to his holiday cabin in the New Forest when suddenly all around was illuminated by a perfectly circular disc, vivid white in colour. It had been moving slowly but stopped and hovered above him. Then after a couple of minutes the object developed a blue halo around it. After a further minute, the blue light went out, the vivid white light faded and turned to a yellow, orange and finally red hue before the object disappeared rapidly into the sky.
This is an early tale of a strange moving, colourful light in the sky that suddenly disappears. This type of story was to increase exponentially within 2 decades.
Things get a lot more interesting in Part 2.This will cover World II and a Post War UFO cover up within the British Establishment. Watch this space!
edit on 19/12/12 by mirageman because: tidy up