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The 1954 French flap:

The index page for the 1954 French flap section of this website is here.

October 3, 1954, Escaudoeuvres, Nord:

Reference number for this case: 3-Oct-54-Escaudoeuvres. Thank you for including this reference number in any correspondence with me regarding this case.


Around 2017, "skeptical" ufologist Dominique Caudron, based in the Nord, cataloged sightings in the Nord region for October 3, 1954, neglected by ufologists, including many that were previously unpublished, and mostly explainable by a red moon whose appearance was altered by clouds.

One of these observations was reported in the regional newspapers La Voix du Nord and La Croix du Nord for October 5, 1954:

At 08:30 p.m., on the National Road 29 near Escaudoeuvres in the department of the Nord, cyclists saw the same phenomenon than that in Marcoing, the latter being a misinterpretation of the Moon.




Transforner craft in Marcoing,
under the eyes of about forty
people, including the entire gendarmerie

Sunday between 8:30 p.m. and 8:45 p.m., Miss Anne-Marie Pérut, 20 years old, daughter of a gendarme of the Marcoing brigade, saw through the window of her bedroom a very bright glow. She approached and noticed that less than a kilometer from the gendarmerie, above the Couillet wood, a very large ball of fire to which was suspended a second ball in the shape of a nacelle, which swayed, remained motionless in the sky.

She immediately alerted her father who refused to believe her. Mr. Pérut finally resolved to come and see the "thing", and to make sure he was not the victim of a hallucination, he warned all his colleagues and their families.

More than twenty people were soon to contemplate the phenomenon. The gendarmerie allowed itself to stop the cyclists coming from Masnières and going to Marcoing. More than thirty spectators attended the show. For more than a quarter of an hour the two fireballs remained almost immobile at around 500 to 600 meters above sea level, moving vertically at times.

Suddenly, they turned into an elongated shape that we readily call a cigar. The latter then moved horizontally almost as far as the eye could see and returned to the same place in the form of a spinning top. When the latter disappeared definitively in the direction of Viller-Plouich, that is to say Southwest, a rather bright gleam persisted for quite a long time in the sky.

The 30 or 40 spectators, including all the gendarmes of the Marcoing brigade, tried in vain to consider themselves hallucinated. They were all the more disturbed because the place where the saucer was seen is considered to be a strategic spot. Their emotion was at its height when a few minutes later a plane circled this area.

Note that the phenomenon was seen by several people of Marcoing, of Noyelles-sur-Escaut and by cyclists traveling between Iwuy and Escaudières.



If you see landing
bring us the Martians

- Oh! A saucer!

- No, it's a balloon.

- And I tell you it's a saucer!

... I would have liked him to be right, because, you will believe me if you want, I have never had the chance to see a single saucer, a flying saucer of course. But alas, it was really a balloon.

It gets really annoying, everyone sees flying saucers, or at least cigars imbued with indecisive gleams, everyone... except us, the journalists!

And they come to me at the newsroom.

- I, Sir, saw last night around nine o'clock, near the door of Bethune, "something that emitted a red glow"...

- You're lucky, I wish it was me...

- Laugh, laugh, don't you believe me?

- But I just want to believe, show me your "something" with its "red glow", so I also can see what it looks like.

- You can imagine that "it" is gone, since Sunday evening, but I can introduce you to someone who saw the occupants come out of the "thing".

- Huh! ...

And here we go, going to the witness'.

The "witness" saw nothing, but it was his son... This boy returned to the local school, telling that the teacher had seen, Sunday evening, a saucer land, from where came out little men no higher than that, dressed in shiny spacesuits...

All this, of course, is the kid's say.

But I will end up believing, me, in these saucer stories! If you find one, bring it to me, we have it examined and if you find it too heavy, at least bring the Martian.

The next day, we will make you a paper like that, in the newspaper and with a convincing photo, moreover.


Fashion is with flying saucers and cigars. These mysterious craft disturb the most balanced minds and often fanciful comments mark the appearance of these flying "machines."

In the evening from Saturday to Sunday, two residents of Jeumont wishing to remain anonymous, but whose good faith cannot be doubted for those who know them, stated to have seen while they were driving on rue de Solre-le-Château, in Jeumont, a strange-shaped craft in the sky; this saucer-shaped object, after having moved for a few seconds above the city, went up to vertically and was soon out of sight.

... AND IN

Sunday, around 8:30 p.m., Miss Anne-Marie Pérut, 20, saw from her bedroom window in Cambrai, above the Couillet wood, a large fireball accompanied by another smaller one below.

She warns her father, a gendarme at the Marcoing brigade, who was very incredulous.

Shortly after, having left the house, he saw the same phenomenon which could be examined by his colleagues, their families and passers-by.

Originally, the fireballs had a spherical then elliptical shape. After a quarter of an hour, they disappeared, came back to disappear definitively in the form of a crescent.

Note that the same phenomenon was observed, at the same time, between Iwuy and Escaudoeuvres.


Sunday, around 9:30 p.m., a mysterious machine was seen a few kilometers from Armentières.

The object appeared in the form of a golden half-moon, crossed in the center by a greenish line. It hovered above rue Fleury, at la Chapelle d'Armentières.

It was widely observed by the inhabitants of this district, one of whom provided himself with binoculars to better examine the contours of the "saucer."

But, soon, the luminous form disappeared in the direction of Fleurbaix (Pas-de-Calais).


Dominique Caudron drew up an inventory of observations in the Nord on October 3, 1954, containing 51 reports, including this one:

The Fabulous day of October 3, 1954


Chronology of the observations of October 3.

We give here only a summary of what was published in the press of the time, for the Nord region, regardless of what the ufologists could later say. We have numbered all these observations, the first of which have nothing to do with the setting of the moon, in order to be able to study them globally in a table. Some are already the subject of a special file.

[... other cases...]

19) 08:30 p.m., RN29 near ESCAUDOEUVRES (59)

- Cyclists saw the same phenomenon than in Marcoing.

(La Voix du Nord 5/10 page 3, La Croix du Nord 5/10 page 8)

[... other cases...]

All this is only a compilation of the information given by all newspapers of the time, including local editions, and of which ufologists only used a part.

We will see that the analysis of this information makes it possible to eliminate the hypothesis of a flying saucer, in favor of those of multiple observations of the moon, whose image was reddened and deformed by clouds, which also gave it an illusory apparent movement.


Analysis of the observations of October 3, 1954

[... other cases...]

19) 08:30 p.m., RN29 near ESCAUDOEUVRES (59)

proximity with the identifiable case of Marcoing

[... other cases...]


The Moon.


(These keywords are only to help queries and are not implying anything.)

Escaudoeuvres, Nord, cyclists, road


[----] indicates sources that are not yet available to me.

Document history:

Version: Created/Changed by: Date: Change Description:
1.0 Patrick Gross June 6, 2019 First published.
1.1 Patrick Gross April 20, 2020 Additions [vdn1], [cdn1].

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This page was last updated on April 20, 2020.