Friday 14 October 1994

Visual Communications Possible With UFOs


The following extract is taken from the fourth chapter of Arthur Shuttlewood’s second book, Warnings From Flying Friends, published by the Portway Press in 1968.

A late October experience in 1966 is still ineradicable, vividly etched on the minds of a building plasterer contractor and his wife who live in St. Johns Road, Warminster. Checking carefully on their testimony, I firmly believe they witnessed a UFO landing and takeoff on Saturday, October 22nd at Chitterne, a village lying a few miles from Warminster in the general Eastward direction of Stonehenge.
Dennis Tilt and his wife were then newcomers to our town and honestly did not know what to make of their unusual sighting, except that it was ‘certainly nothing to do with the military.’ They were driving homeward from Basingstoke and neared the quiet village at around 11.28 p.m.

Just on the far side of Chitterne both noticed ‘three flame-coloured lights in triangular formation on the ground, on land belonging to a farm on our right.’ Dennis stopped the car, his curiosity aroused, stepping out on to the road to enjoy a closer view of the brightly shining trio of spheres.

A trifle nervous, sensing that all was not as it should be along the otherwise darkened highway, a deathly silence blanketing the air with the cutting of the car engine, Mrs. Tilt advised her husband to get back into the vehicle and continue their journey.

Although her eyes probed the darkness as avidly as his own focus on the pyramid of lights in the field, he obeyed the apprehension in her tones as she called out. They drove along a bit farther, therefore. But when they turned heads to glance back, they noted that the strange lights had fused together.

The object had lifted off the earth and was now huge in the sky. Both testified that it resembled, at this joined stage, ‘a frying pan without a handle.’ It was hovering some fifty feet up, looming large and ominous, deadly silent.

Dennis, prompted by his wife passenger, put his foot hard down on the accelerator pedal, sharing the unease at that moment of his wife. As the car surged into full power and tore along the night-shrouded road, the couple kept looking in rear and further saw that the spaceship did not appear to change its distance from them one iota, although Dennis was proceeding at top speed.

The wife maintained constant watch on the UFO, which gave off a fitful yellow glow, and Dennis peeped backward as he negotiated bends and corners. Both found it disconcerting and a little frightening that they were unable to shake off their aerial pursuer for several miles of that memorable homeward run.

When they eventually reached St. Johns Road the shining apparition overhead had faded from their gaze - and the upset couple breathed sighs of relief. There was one more shock to come . . .

When Mrs. Tilt later went up to the bedroom of their children, glancing out of the window as she straightened the curtains, she was staggered to see the flying object again for a few seconds. It was a ball of shining glory in the heavens before suddenly changing to an elongated egg shape and blacking out.

Because it is so preposterous in the light of Earth concepts, one hesitates to decide what must have actually happened when the UFO ceased to shed blazing light down upon the car in the final stretch to their home. The glowing spaceship must still have been present yet out of vision, according to its last dramatic reappearance at the curtain close.

So it is permissible to accept that these spacecraft are able to ‘black out’ whenever it suits their purpose of mystifying people and provoking thought, giving a false impression that they are no longer present in the atmosphere. This confirms observations made in the last chapter concerning the advanced art of materialization and dematerialization.

Even while the Tilts were excitedly and agitatedly discussing the vanishing act of the sky borne giant, it was probably right overhead and invisibly dogging their car tracks on the run in from Heytesbury to Warminster, unknown to Dennis Tilt and his wife.

So sure were the couple that they had indeed witnessed something untoward and absolutely inexplicable by Earth standards, that Mr. Tilt arose early next morning, Sunday October 23rd, and was at the farm making inquiries about the resting place of mysterious objects that merged together before flying unerringly in rear of his car the previous night.

He drew a blank, however. The farmer was incapable of enlightening him with regard to what the ‘one ball from a triangle of lights’ was doing on his pastures long after dusk on a strange nocturnal spree. In spite of a diligent examination of the field, and search of the surrounding area, the plastering contractor could not discern the precise spot where the spacecraft had taken off.

Dennis was only able to guess the approximate region, and there were no telltale marks or indentations on the farmland. His investigation, that of a sensible person bent on dealing intelligently with unknown factors, proved to is own satisfaction that what he had seen was not even remotely connected with military activity.

He contacted the Army and asked relevant questions, answers convincing him that troops were not the culprits. When first seen by the young couple in the car, the three lights forming a triangle were flame-coloured or orange-red. The composite object chasing the car was silverfish and gave off a pulsating glow or radiation.

Dawn Flanigan is a keen Warminster equestrian, living in Bath Road, who loves nothing better than a stiff breeze rippling her fair hair as she gallops or canters over th downs on horseback.

She and a friend had several peculiar visual experiences in May of 1966, shortly after my last book was submitted to my publisher. Here is her description, given to me at her home in the following month, of patent UFO aeronautics:-

‘While riding over Salisbury Plain, in the general direction of Imber village, we saw to our left - about five miles away, I would estimate, to the North - a long object, silvery and metallic, that remained stationary over a wood.

‘Frankly, we paid little attention to it at first, as we are accustomed to seeing strange sights over the plain. The Army and Air Force are often on manoeuvres in that area, although we keep out of their way when riding. The afternoon was warm and sunny and the object glittered ever so brightly.

‘The glint caught our eyes and we stopped to have a good look, then. It was a brightly flashing pencil of silver in the sun. The next day, about mid-afternoon, we saw a similar thing. But this time it was moving slowly over the tops of some trees. Again we stopped and watched.

‘We expected it to twist and turn, or perform some aerobatics, as we now presumed it to be a glider. But it simply vanished from view completely, only to reappear a few seconds later at the far end of the wood. Then it sank slowly down behind it and out of sight.

‘The belt of trees seemed to swallow it up. We now realised it was not a glider or anything like that, because it had an elongated shape, was without wings, and shone much too brightly in the sun. My girl friend and I changed direction and prodded our mounts towards the wood as fast as the rough terrain would allow.

‘On arrival there, we could find nothing to link with the strange air machine. Nonetheless, the horses were most reluctant to enter the wood - and quite impatient to leave, we noticed. They grew ever so restive and began snorting, tossing their heads.

‘All in the same month of May, we saw this sort of thing happen on several occasions. In fact, we investigated another three times. In each case we found nothing on the ground. There is one particular occasion, the last, I shall never forget.

‘That was when our horses became so frightened that they reared up and bolted across the plain for home. Needless to say, we did the same rather than be stranded out there in the wilds,’ she admitted soberly, reflecting that there were certain copses in the aea that horses will not enter. It is as though they possess a sixth sense, warning that danger lurks in the undergrowth there.

During the third week in November of 1967, the retired surveyor and chief public health inspector of Warminster and Westbury Rural Council, Frank Merrett, was out shooting pheasants on the Rye Hill Farm estate of Claudius R. Algar, who is chairman of Warminster Magistrates’ Court and farms at Longbridge Deverill, a few miles south of Warminster.

Shooting friends and beaters were with Mr. Merrett on that Thursday afternoon. A shadow uncurled on the ground - and the surveyor sportsman immediately raised his gun into the firing position, expecting to see a covey of game birds winging overhead.

But there was no whirring sound that one associates with such mass flight. Above the farmhouse itself, casting its shadow in accordance with the position of the wintry sun, was a long torpedo shaped object that shone grey-white and sparkled along the top where sun rays struck and bounced off its casting.

It was more rounded at one end than the other. What appeared to be dark slots or windows darkened the side facing the shooting companions. Frank told me bluntly, in front of a dozen people: ‘I have always thought you and other so-called witnesses of these phenomena mad, you know.’

His eyes gleamed as he shook a wiser head. ‘All I can now say is - if you are insane, I am proud to join you. It was in sight for over three minutes altogether and made no sound. I ran along by the hedge to warn a gamekeeper friend in the shooting party, but when I reached him the object had gone.’

When he left his co-shooters, it was moving over the house and slowly heading towards the downs to the North, he told me. Having actually seen something unworldly and incomprehensible, the former disbeliever was adamant that it is futile and resolves nothing if such information is kept secret. He was quietly thrilled to have had his sighting, I could tell.

Other witnesses affirmed that the aerial torpedo continued its gentle course towards the downs, then vanished. One moment it was still there, the next non-existent. Changing of form is not restricted to night-time alien craft.

The following Warminster sighting report, which I gave the Air Ministry in the summer of 1966, really interested them a great deal. I could sense the mounting excitement of my Ministry contact at the revelation over this alteration of one particular UFO shape at speed. He was insistent on full details.

These I willingly presented: we have nothing to hide or be ashamed of in our town. There were over a dozen young people present on this occasion.
Let us listen to the words of them, Marion Bull, a 14-year-old schoolgirl:

‘The date was July 28th. The time was between 3.30 and 4 p.m. and I was in the local swimming baths in Weymouth Street. I was looking South towards the Ferris Mead housing estate when I saw a silver object come across, just above the trees.

‘It was quite big and shiny. It seemed to be flat to start with, then - as it came over the pleasure park next to the public baths - it appeared to turn on its side. It then looked like a bowler hat, with a slightly upturned brim.

‘It kept on going backwards and forwards for a while, then it shape changed entirely. It was now for all the world like a bone, slim in the middle, large and bulbous at either end. To me, it was just the same as a large bone any dog is fond of gnawing.

‘One girl thought it was rather like a man’s bow tie, only it was a silvery white in colour. Once more it shot from side to side across the park - then it fled from sight, leaving no trace,’ said Marion.

This ability to alter shape in motion is one of the tantalizing features that UFOs exhibit. Later chapters give clues as to what this strongly suggests. Spacecraft, and those aboard, are capable of transformation in physique, size and dimension. This sounds ridiculous taken out of context, for we at first concluded - when trying to analyze such reports and their consistency - that force fields around these airships are responsible for making them ostensibly produce differing shape patterns.

The craft outlines are blurred by swift movement that upsets the power field surrounding them in flight. This is what we initially felt, yet we were not entirely correct in our diagnosis. Here is another puzzling little cameo from the overall UFO jewel box:

It was on Boxing Day of 1967, when farm worker Michael Coleman set off to feed a herd of cows on the hill overlooking Heytesbury, three miles from Warminster, that another example of the bizarre and unworldly sounds erupted without warning, scaring the beasts of the field as well as causing the phlegmatic employee concern.

He had distributed the food to the cattle, and, turning his tractor round to face the wind and rain so that his seat would not get too wet, he dismounted from the machine and started to count the animals. Immediately his feet touched the earth, however, he heard a tremendous clatter of noise that shook the sides of the hill and almost made him topple off balance.

It was so unexpected and savage that he clung to the side of his tractor until it subsided. The weird buffeting of sound waves he termed ‘much like giant hands shaking huge loads of galvanised sheeting all around. The cattle fled from their piles of food with feet flying and tails in the air. They were terrified.’

Michael pointed out that it is a rarity for cows to run from food, especially in bad weather. After the thunderclaps of noise abated, they were still reluctant to return, taking ten minutes or more to settle back to former equanimity and content.

‘It was funny, though,’ he told me sombrely. ‘Some cattle in the next field, no more than a couple of hundred yards from us, never even flinched.’ This surprised him considerably. They chewed the cud quite happily, unconcerned at blasting sounds nearby. Why?

Perhaps this was an earth tremor, I suggested, but Mr. Coleman was insistent that - although its effects made the ground tremble at its height - the loud sounds originated in the atmosphere. ‘It made my head and ears sing, it was so fierce,’ he told me. The geography of the hill fields supplied the answer. The sounds were localized in one section; the adjoining field was around a curving slope of the hill.
Mr. Coleman then recalled another unaccountable incident back in December of 1961, when he worked for farmer Harry Wales. The employees erected a new fence, digging in sleepers some three feet into the ground to act as strainers.

Going to the field next morning, they found that all the cattle had strayed from their pasture during night hours. The fence had been violently uprooted, the sleepers torn out and littering the area in jumbled confusion. Yet not one of the beasts was hurt and there were no tracks of any vehicle visible around the soil disturbance mounds.

In February of 1962, working for his present boss, Stanley B. Pottow, by the same field only over the boundary, Michael found that a similar phenomenon had again struck one night. The employer thought the fence had been smashed by the impact of a vehicle driving through it.

No tracks of any transport were discovered, however; and no cattle were anywhere near the scene of devastation, so their footprints could not have obscured wheel marks. The tractor driver from Knook thought no more of these incidents, apart from their constituting unsolved minor mysteries, until he read a newspaper report that Geoffrey Gale, of Parsonage Farm (near Cradle Hill at Warminster) had suffered fencing damage in January and February of 1966.

An account of the latter appeared in The Warminster Mystery, preludes to sightings of UFOs with clockwork regularity over Cradle Hill itself, a few hundred yards from the farmhouse lying in the dip before the steep approach.

These happenings all took place in the same area, Michael revealed, practically on a direct line between Chitterne and Warminster. He saw nothing overhead at the material time. Nevertheless, he did experience a nasty electric shock on one occasion, while travelling on a tractor early one morning.

He attributed it to a shorting fault on the machine. Strange climax to this true story is: When the tractor and its engine was thoroughly examined by a specialist, its electrical wiring system was faultless. Now here is a story about cows that some readers might have deemed ‘a lot of bull’ at that period . . . .

This minor mystery hit national headlines in late summer of 1967. A herd of several dozen cows disappeared from farmland at Chitterne one morning. In fact, they were absent from pastures and milking sheds for more than a day. An extensive search was carried out for the missing beasts by the farmer, his dairymen and other labourers, to no avail.

The Army was indirectly blamed, one gathered, for broken fencing. They denied responsibility. No troops were in that vicinity at that time. Because of a baffling lack of tracks which should have been left by the fleeing creatures, the several hours of searching over a wide area found the cattle still missing parade.

The hunt was called off by a worried farmer and his staff. Then, next morning, the cows were all back in the field, closely herded together and lowing contentedly, as though nothing extraordinary had transpired, no page ripped out of their calendar. They were unharmed, a cursory inspection proved.

Forty sheep vanished from a farm near Norridge Wood (like Chitterne, also mentioned in The Warminster Mystery), shortly after this. Despite an exhaustive search of the area for many miles, not a hide or hair was found of the flock. It was assumed they had wandered afar and were lost in thick woodland.

They came back - or were brought back? - to their grazing grounds a whole week later, wagging their tails behind them! Either we have abnormally adventurous cattle around Warminster, capable of flying into the night sky without wings; or they were deliberately abducted by aliens for necessary experimentation and organic examination, safely returned undamaged and perfectly happy afterwards.

A foreman fitter for a firm of agricultural engineers told me of his encounter with a cigar aero-formed UFO on the night of Sunday, December 10th of 1967. George Radbourne and his wife Ruth live at Southleigh View, Warminster.

At around 11.35 p.m. they had passed through the crossroads at Chapmanslade and were approaching the straight stretch of road leading from Thoulston Bends to Warminster, returning home after an evening out in the Bath area. They blinked when the large airship hove into sight.

It swept from left to right across the bonnet of their car, from Warminster downs toward the Cley Hill direction. It was white in colour but had a curious green sheen at its centre, the craft to the eye the size of a human adult hand at arm’s length.

‘It jerked up and down slightly, in a rather erratic motion,’ attested Mr. Radbourne. ‘Then it curved gracefully to low height, away to the right of us. The sharper end "nose" of the craft dipped - and the whole structure blacked out just short of Cley Hill. It was silent in flight and seemed to bob about like a duck on pond water in its forward movement.’

Ruth, in the front passenger seat, corroborated his story. They were comparative newcomers to our district and knew nothing of the town’s amazing UFO history. Neither wanted publicity, to begin with, relenting when I stressed that names and addresses are so important when enumerating and evaluating testimony on a subject which is, unfortunately, still largely futuristic and embryonic to the majority of people.

‘It was a little bit like a weather balloon when we first spotted it,’ said Mrs. Radbourne, who was not frightened by the experience. ‘It maintained constant speed in crossing and was doubtless under control. The movement was not the same as that of a balloon and the object appeared solid at its nearest point. We assumed it had landed when the light went out.’

Ronald Dew and his sister Dorothea, together with their parents, had an unexpected visual feast on the night of April 23rd, 1967. This was a few months after the family took over management of a cafeteria in High Street, Warminster, and Mr. Dew was driving to their Westbury home at the end of a working day.

Dorothea and Ronald, likeable young people, supplied me with this news story interlocked with UFO outbursts around Warminster. Dorothea said: ‘It was about 9.25 p.m. and we had just passed Colloway Clump into the climbing stretch of straight road leading to the junction with Upton Scudamore village.

‘Cley Hill was to our left when we saw a large bight light hovering in the dark sky. It was a mixture of orange and red, we thought, then we could see that this effect was produced because smaller red lights flickered from the base of the large object. They lit up the countryside for a great distance around.

‘We all watched intently, Dad having stopped the car. Our eyes were glued to the bright spectacle, not knowing what it could be at that location. It then went out, like a candle being extinguished, after growing smaller and fading.’

Ronald confirmed this account, saying the small lights seemed to shoot back into the main light before all vanished. He thought the smaller red globes were darting down to the hilltop and returning to the main structure from time to time. ‘It was an intense light coming from the larger ball. The little ones glistened and were full of movement.’

‘When the tiny globes of light disappeared into the huge ball, this became egg-shaped, yellow in colour, changed to a dullish white and was reduced in size. Then it went out.’ His father had seen something equally as dramatic shortly before this, but did not desire any publicity. I respect such wishes.

American poet and senior English teacher Richard George, of the Dean Carteret School in West Orange, New Jersey, flew from the States to London, then travelled by road to our Cradle Hill on the night of June 30th, 1966. He came with the express intention of seeing a UFO. He is Dean of Boys at the school in the USA, also, formerly served in the Royal Air Force and is not easily fooled. An ideal visitor.

Richard was accompanied by Joseph Hall, his brother-in-law, and another welcome volunteer in our sky watching party the same night was Owen Roberts, chemist and opthalmist from Merthr Tydfil in Wales. (Nothing wrong with his eyesight, surely?)

The ironic part is that Geoffrey Gale and his wife Robin, living in the farmhouse nearby, came along for the first time - and saw an unidentified flying object - although the ‘Thing’ had been virtually haunting their very doorstep for four months by then.

They drove up in a Land Rover to see a UFO in silver-ringed and pulsating splendour blazing a semi-circular aerial trail over their farmland. Richard George journeyed several thousand miles to see one of the incredible craft. He was not disappointed and all present were impressed. ‘If this is not absolutely inexplicable, I do not know what is,’ exclaimed Joseph Hall.

Our visitor from America was emotionally moved enough to quote verse in the silent solitude of 12.55 a.m. Owen Roberts said: ‘I am over sixty and my wife thinks I am crazy to believe I shall ever see a UFO. I have been convinced life exists on other planets as far back as I can remember.

‘After what I have seen tonight, I can go home and tell my wife I have at last seen a space vehicle from another world that can travel in the region of 30,000 miles an hour at least,’ he enthused. He snatched a brief period of sleep on our living room settee, sending my wife a large bottle of perfume in appreciation of her hospitality, from Merthyr Tydfil.

Whereas satellites glide gently for over a dozen minutes to cross from horizon to horizon, aching to the neck to watch even though travelling at 17,500 miles an hour, we had seen a pulsating UFO with orange body and silvery aura tear across the sky in 46 seconds. Bob Strong handed round hot coffee and Sybil ladled out biscuits as we quietly thrilled to the noiseless magic of the ring of fire.

Richard wrote to me from America on July 5th: ‘Thank you for the opportunity to observe with you the unusual astral phenomenon over Cradle Hill. I found the entire experience stimulating and fascinating. It is easy to doubt and scoff, much more difficult to accept.

‘To tell you the truth, I keep trying to understand what I actually saw. It was "out of this world" and yet "into this world." Once again, thank you for your invitation to come along at any time in future, and for the extraordinary sighting on June 30th. All good wishes. Ad Astra - Richard.’