In the late summer of 2019 LAPIS was contacted by David, a lovely man who is getting on in years and who wanted to tell us about an experience he had back in 1996. He told us he wanted it to be shared and to be known about by others. While the account that follows is bizarre and may stretch anyone’s credibility, we have met David and he comes across as an honest man who has nothing to gain from telling us of this other than his stated aim of sharing with others. He can consistently repeat these experiences although he was somewhat confused about the names of some of the locations. He moved away from the area soon after these events and hasn’t been back for a good while.
David knows that those who report UFOs are subject to ridicule and that has stopped him coming forward with his remarkable story before.
And his story certainly seems to be unique, at least at first hearing. However, A brief bit of research by LAPIS prior to publishing David’s story shows that he is not alone in having weird experiences in the area.
David’s sighting occurs around Ramsbottom and the road over to Rochdale.
There were three reports of UFOs made to the MOD a year after David’s sighting, in 1997, in Rochdale, Heywood and Bury.
LAPIS are aware of another sighting in around 2007 involving a site worker seeing an unusual light and then finding himself at a different location with no memory of travelling there. This was reported to a local newspaper but unfortunately wasn’t published so the details are sketchy (*If this was you please get in touch!)
Government UFO files also show a case from nearby Whitworth in 1989, 7 years before David’s sighting, and a more recent sighting of 8 lights flying in formation over Ramsbottom and Scout Moor in 2009.
These are just the easy to find cases that were reported to the MOD so who knows how many others there are which went unreported?
What follows are the events David remembers. He first gave his account by phone then two LAPIS members visited him at his home and went through the events again with him.
In the early part of 1996 David was working nights as a security guard in Ramsbottom. It was cold in the office where he was working and at around 2am he went to his car to get a portable heater from it. There was a streetlight nearby, it had been snowing but had stopped. As he walked to the car a shadow crossed the light. David looked up and saw a large craft overhead. It was silent.
On the following night he was working at a different location and having finished his night’s work he was driving home at about half six in the morning. The main thing on his mind was getting home for his breakfast. As he was driving past Scout Moor Quarry and the Plane Tree pub where the road straightens out David noticed that the sun was coming up, and that it was lovely and red.
Then there was a flash on the hillside. He stopped the car and remembers the time being about 6.40 am. At first he thought he was looking at a hang glider and that it was going to crash into the ground but it did a U turn and he saw a figure with limbs and tassels hanging off it – it was a man in a silver suit.
Then on his right he saw a strange rounded craft about 75 yards away. It stopped in mid-air at gutter height, was shaped like a US Army dinghy and was about 30ft in size. It seemed to be made of polished chrome. It shot off towards Rochdale centre.
Unnerved by this David decided to hide and parked his car behind an eight-foot wall where he could see the pub (Owd Betts). As he drove there the daytime turned into night-time again and he could see the stars. After waiting for three or four minutes he was about to start the car when something loomed, rocket shaped and 8 foot long. It was not an airship, had antennae in front, had no navigation lights and made no noise. It looked like a stealth craft at the front and had no tail, just a point. It was very low and was at the level of the upstairs pub window. David sat there frightened. He thought that if he drove under the object, he would scrape the car as it was so low, and it looked solid. Then two wings came out of it and gave one flap which David described as being like a ray fish and it moved off slowly towards a nearby reservoir and in the direction of Rochdale Golf Club.
David drove home and when he got in, he was surprised to see his wife up earlier than usual. However, she told him he was later than expected, it was 8.10am…
Obviously, we can’t say what David saw or what it’s origin may have been, but together with the other sightings, it shows that various people in the area have witnessed strange things over the years, so David is not alone.
The area is also well within the area of the “Pennine Lights” as discussed by Jenny Randles in her book, “The Pennine UFO Mystery”
The area obviously deserves further research!
Janet Walkey & Paul James Pearson, Lancashire Anomalous Phenomena Investigation Society