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UFOs in the daily Press:

Bright lights seen over Cornwall, U-K., 2002:

The following article has been published in the Western Morning News and also on the thisisDevon web site, U-K, August 3, 2002.

LIGHTS PROMPT UFO CALLS

Strange lights in the sky above Cornwall which were seen by a number of people prompted a flurry of calls to a local radio station yesterday.

BBC Radio Cornwall dealt with the inquiries after a woman from the south-east of the county rang the station to report seeing lights coming down in a field.

The station's Laurence Reed said the call had attracted more than its fair share of interest as it fired the imagination of more listeners.

He said: "We had a call from a woman from the Camelford area who said that she had seen a UFO."

"We had another man on who suggested that it might have been the International Space Station which was orbiting through the night sky.

"But what it really was I'm not quite sure."

"We have had plenty of calls about it and we had one man on air. It certainly seems to be a subject close to people's hearts."

It is not the first time that the radio station has been called with reports of UFOs.

In the past, many such sightings have been solved with more terrestrial explanations. Mr Reed said: "The last time we had one of these discussions it was decided that what people had seen and thought to be an unidentified flying object was actually the searchlights from a Newquay nightclub reflecting off some low-level clouds.

"But what was seen in the Camelford area this time is still a mystery."

"I live in that area, and I will be out on the weekend with a torch making my own investigations."

Colin Stewart, who is a member of a project group which is hoping to build an observatory for Cornwall near Truro, said: "I work on the basis that if anybody had bothered to come all that way from another planet to Earth they would make it known that they were here."

"Unless, of course, they were not very intelligent - but then they are unlikely to have been able to get here if that were the case. It is summer and we do get showers of meteorites which can just look like bright lights flashing quickly across the sky."

Dr Robert Massey, of the Greenwich Observatory in London , said he could not think of an astronomical explanation for the lights.

"There's nothing really that I can think of at the moment which would produce such a thing - but there are many, many different things that it could be," he said.

"The planet Venus is visible at the moment quite low in the sky just after sunset. That is often the cause of some of these sightings."

"It's not likely to be the International Space Station - that only looks like a fairly slow-moving light which takes about three or four minutes to go right across the sky.

"It really is difficult to say what this person has seen."

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This page was last updated on August 3, 2002.