UFOs: what is the truth behind close encounters in Camden, Barnet and Haringey?
The Ministry of Defence has given up watching the skies after closing its UFO files last week, but the question that has piqued human interest throughout the ages has still not been answered – are we alone in the Universe?
Following the famous Roswell incident in 1947, when a flying saucer supposedly crash-landed in New Mexico, people all across the world have been fascinated by the unexplained and the supernatural.
The story is no different in Camden, Barnet or Haringey.
Reports of alleged UFO sightings across all three boroughs still flood into the UK UFO Sightings website every year.
Muswell Hill has even been nicknamed Roswell Hill because of the number of unidentified flying objects spotted above it.
In February last year, a strange humming sound was also reported coming from all directions around Primrose Hill and was heard and reported by several people.
The same year Louis, from Camden, reported on the UK UFO Sightings website that he saw a bright white light flash and move across the sky on the night of the Olympic closing ceremony on August 11.
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However, sceptic Douglas Daniels, who has been president of the Highgate Scientific Society since 1967, believes most spooky sightings are just the result of natural phenomena or man-made objects in the sky.
He said: “Most sightings of so-called UFOs are made by people who don’t customarily look at the sky. I’ve been looking at the sky for over half a century and I’ve never had an encounter!
“A common explanation for UFOs is aircraft, balloons and weather balloons. I’ve also seen a bird in the distance through my telescope flying across the moon. It looked like a little black dot.”
But stories of strange moving lights and silver objects in the north London sky keep coming thick and fast.
Since 2010, there have been at least 12 separate reports of moving lights across the boroughs.
Most of these are centred around Muswell Hill, Camden Town, Hampstead, East Finchley and Alexandra Palace.
When questioned, most observers have insisted that the lights could not be explained away as being meteors, aircraft or Chinese lanterns.
Mr Douglas, from Finchley, added: “It’s human nature to construct stories. It’s more of a thrill to think something has come from a distant planet but it’s not feasible for life as we know it to come here from so far away.”
However, he conceded: “There have been incidents that can’t be explained.
“Airline pilots have said they have seen strange things up in the sky but this could be explained by rare ball lightning.”