Be the holy! It's been a while since Blather found itself in the middle of a UFO flap. That is, we mean, in the actual *middle* of one, with a spate of UFO sightings in the area of Archway, near to Crouch End in north London, where this particular BlatherGoon resides. The sightings appear to have taken place on February 1st at 5.30pm with the Police recieving a brace of phone calls to report the objects...

On the street

Writing on the 7th of February, the Islington Gazette reports:
Alix McAlister, 34, a market stall trader from Bredgar Road, Archway, said: "I just picked up my son from nursery in Bredgar Road. I had just come out of the door when I noticed what was going on in the sky.

"There were a group of them - 10 to 15 of them moving together. My first impression was that they reminded me of a squadron of aeroplanes in formation. But they didn't have a proper formation and they were all moving at the same speed.

"I thought for a while that something was happening in the centre of London. Bombs and planes crossed my mind. But I realised very quickly that they didn't look like any aircraft I'd seen before.

"They were coming from the north and moving south. And then they kind of stopped and they were hovering. There was no sound. They seemed to fade away and I saw more coming and then they stopped. It lasted about 10 minutes."
On camera

Two days later, on the 9th, the Muswell Hill Gazette claimed to have dramatic footage of the incident:
We have extraordinary video footage giving first-hand evidence of the Archway UFO phenomenon which brought the area to a standstill.

Here's YOUR chance to decide whether aliens were actually hovering over Archway - or whether there was a more innocent explanation.

Amateur camerman John Zimmerman, of Bredgar Road, Archway, filmed the spectacle from a vantage point in Holloway Road.

The "squadron" of around 15 orange lights spread panic among passers-by who witnessed it at around 5.30pm on January 31.

People screamed - some fearing it was a terrorist attack. Police received 999 calls within minutes.

The lights moved in a southerly direction then hovered above Archway before disappearing and appearing again. The eerie display lasted about 10 minutes.

Mr Zimmerman, 50, said: "I was watching from Holloway Road. I realised I had my camera and started filming. They moved steadily and slowly, all at the same speed."
You can see the footage here.

On the record

A quick perusal of the electronic database doohickey over at the website (always a great resource) records that this is not the first UFO sighting in these parts either. From an e-mail interview on the site:
On Sunday, February 21, 1999, at 7 p.m., Niall S. was at his home in Muswell Hill, North London, where he was "watching two bright lights hovering in the sky to the northwest of London. They were too bright for stars but simply hung there, one higher and slotted to the left. Then, after fifteen minutes, one simply vanished. My mother came to watch, and a bright light came from its right side. The same happened five minutes later to the lower one," as it, too, disappeared.

Niall reported that "they had the appearance of stars but much brighter. They were comparable to police lights but clearly at a greater distance. The higher one was about 45 degrees above the horizon, and the lower one about 38 degrees. Condition of sky--some light clouds. Its size was the size of the nail on my small finger."
It may also be worth mentioning that the location of the sighting is within a short walking distance to Highgate cemetery.


Muswell Hill Gazette

Islington Gazette

Video of the UFO sighting.

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Google Map link for location of sighting