I recently returned from a short holiday in Nottingham. I was staying with my brother and his girlfriend in Sherwood Forest, the legendary former home of Robin Hood and his band of Merry Men. Although we were based in the heart of the forest, we had the benefit of a small clearing situated by a lake and thus we had an unbroken view of the starry sky at night.
After a couple of nights in the forest, we began to notice just how busy the skies above us appeared to be at night. We would regularly spot small moving lights high in the sky that appeared so distant they looked like stars. Most moved in a straight line, causing us to question whether they were planes flying incredibly high. There was a total absence of any sound indicating that they were planes however. One suddenly dispensed entirely with moving in a boring straight line and began zigzagging sharply across the sky. This seemed to be an unlikely movement for any man-made flying object.
Intrigued by what I had witnessed, I decided to dig a little deeper into things and soon discovered that Nottingham appears to be rather a hot spot for UFO activity. A huge number of sightings appear to have been made in and around Nottingham in the post war era. From flying saucers to full-on encounters with alien species, Nottingham appears to be a popular spot among visiting extraterrestrials. The BBC has compiled a list of some eye-witness accounts, which is worth checking out.
One particularly interesting story appears to have little coverage anywhere online (it is not listed by the BBC nor mentioned on Wikipedia’s list of UK alien and UFO reports), but thanks to the strenuous efforts of Kristian Lander, I am able to report on this story. According to Lander, he first came across this story in 2007, whilst he was working for the Paranormal Network. He had been asked to look into reports of UFO activity from across the county of Nottingham. He decided to extend his research to the county’s local newspaper archives and there he found the first evidence of the little reported incident.
The crash took place in Cookbury in Ashfield on the night of 12 November 1987. In the small hours of the morning, the peace was suddenly shattered when a “thunderball” came crashing through the houses. The windows of 13 houses were entirely blown out and severe structural damage was caused to several more. At the time, the incident was blamed on a freak weather incident, but the reaction of the authorities seemed to imply that something more sinister may have been at foot. A nearby area of forest was closed to the public and placed under armed guard. Locals were questioned extensively on what they had seen and heard and road blocks were established, ensuring all traffic entering and leaving the crash zone could be searched.
Lander alleged that following the incident many local residents came forward to explain what they had experienced, with many stating that an airborne collision had taken place. One explained that a low flying, bright object had weaved above the buildings, as though it was attempting to avoid striking the homes. Others described it as a ball of light that bobbed up and down and followed the contours of the land.
The area that was cordoned off by the authorities following the 1987 incident is known as Thieves’ Wood. Before the crash, this area already had a reputation for paranormal activity with reports of strange creatures and ghosts dating back over many centuries. Could it be that this reputation was actually spawned out of alien activity? Is Nottingham a hub of intergalactic UFO activity? I strongly suggest that readers pay a visit to this neck of the woods to check the skies for themselves.
Photo of Nottingham lake by Leon Fishman – Attribution 2.0 Generic
A million thanks to Kristian Lander