The Chard Town UFO “Light Beam” Sighting

Marcus Lowth
Published Date
March 24, 2020
Last Updated
September 1, 2020
Estimated Reading Time
7 min read
Posted in
UFOs, Close Encounters

A UFO sighting over a small town with a population of less than 20,000 (at the time) is one that is perhaps little-known, even outside of the UFO community. It is, however, as we often find with these “one-off” and little known about cases, another that displays a number of details that we find in other UFO reports, both known and little-known. And perhaps more importantly, will likely show up in future reports also.

An image of a UFO superimposed onto to a night sky with lightning

Did a UFO appear over a small town in England in 1986?

We will also examine a similar report that happened to the north of the Somerset town in Stoke-on-Trent several months later. Although there are slight differences in the details, both feature the same “bright light” that obscures what otherwise appears to be a nuts-and-bolts craft that would hover in the sky before disappearing.

Each of the cases would enter the public arena when they were reported via the NUFORC (National UFO Reporting Center) website. Perhaps because of this, we should treat it with a certain amount of salt. It is, however, still of interest to researchers of UFO and strange occurrences.

A “Ball Of Light Moving Incredibly Fast” Over A Small Town In Somerset

The exact is uncertain, although witness believes it was around the 15th of June 1986, at around 7 pm. The witness, then 16 years old, was out with several friends on the local school field in Chard Town in Somerset. It was just starting to begin getting dark allowing the stars to show off the sparkle in the clear skies overhead.

It was as they happened to be looking overhead that they noticed a “ball of light moving incredibly fast” across the sky. Although none of the group knew what the strange glowing object was, it was obvious to all of them that it was moving much too fast to be a plane or a helicopter. What’s more, they also knew it wasn’t a comet due to the “slow to fast and curved movements” it exhibited.

An image showing a UFO over a picture of an evening sky

The Chard Town sighting had more than one witness

The witness would recall, based upon the background of the stars, the object was at an approximate altitude of 5 miles.

It was around this point when one of the group became so overwhelmed that they ran home, seemingly upset with what was taking place and in a state of shock.

The rest of the group remained where they were and turned their attention to the rabbiting lamp they had with them.

A Light Display At “Magnificent Speed!”

With the lamp, they would attempt to make their presence known to the strange object by flashing it “for all it was worth”. They would keep doing this for around half an hour before the object suddenly came to a sudden stop. At this point, the witness would describe the object as appearing like “any normal but bright star”.

According to the witness, as they stared at this strange object they realized they were “seeing intelligent life” right in front of them.

Then, things turned even stranger.

From the glowing object, a “second light shot out” and stretched across the skies to the outskirts of the town and back again. This happened at “magnificent speed”. Then, it happened again. Then a third time. This would carry on for several minutes “covering the entire span” of the town. They would estimate that they witnessed between 30 to 50 of these strange lights.

An image of a UFO over a time-lapsed night sky

Witnesses claimed the UFO moved at rapid speeds

After several minutes the light began to become less and less, all of them returning to the main object. It was as if some kind of surveillance mission was taking place over Chard Town.

Finally, all the lights had “returned” to the main glowing object. From then it “faced away”. This is another interesting detail in that the object, despite arriving with a great display of speed, didn’t leave in the same manner. Instead, it appeared to fade, as though it was a light that had been switched off.

Following the light’s disappearance, the group separated and made their way home. None could stop their minds replaying the bizarre episode they had just witnessed.

Another Bizarre Sighting The Following Evening!

The following evening, the main witness along with two friends, was outside the main witness’s home. Each was looking upward in anticipation of seeing the bizarre display again. Much to their surprise, they would see a “large round sphere” that appeared like an “upturned hot air balloon”. However, it was moving too quickly to be a balloon, was much too high, and strangest of all was flashing different colors.

At this point, the witness would run into the house. They would shout to their father to come outside while reaching for their binoculars and running back outside. When the witness returned outside, they balanced themselves on the fence and looked through the binoculars. When they did, they could see individual lights that all attached to the main balloon-shaped object.

They would maintain this vigil for around 10 minutes, noting that the lights continued to flash several different colors.

An image of a UFO over a picture of a city at night

Sightings occurred again the following evening

It was around this point where the witness asked whether their friends could see the strange object overhead. Strangely, though, they could not. It was as though it was only visible to the main witness.

This detail is another that shows up in other UFO reports. This begs the question as to whether the intelligence behind these strange crafts have the ability to “control” who can and can not see them. Might this have been the case here?

The witness’s father would refuse to speak of the incident in the years that followed. The witness remains uncertain as to whether he did see something strange that evening or not. He is, however, by the witness’s own admission, “a total non-believer in anything like this”.

In the 17 years since the incident and the reporting of it, they wouldn’t witness anything as strange as those consecutive nights in the summer of 1986.

A “Bright White Light” Over A “Secret Place!”

It is perhaps worth our time examining a similar incident of strange lights hovering overhead that occurred north of Somerset in Stoke-on-Trent around five months later. And once more the incident was one that was reported to the NUFORC website.

It appears the witness, at the time in November 1986, was working as a security. Their duties were top “walk between two factory plants throughout the night”. Interestingly, he would state that one of these factories was a “secret place” who produced “some sort of catalyst used in the nuclear industry. It was, according to the witness, intentionally positioned “in a small dip”.

An image of a UFO over a night sky with lightning bolts

Other strange incidents took place only months later

It was while they were walking between these two plants, at around 3 am in the morning, that the witness just happened to glance upward. They noticed how clear the night sky was, as well as how dotted it was stars. It was shortly after that they noticed a “bright white light” seemingly near the out-of-the-way plant where they were headed. It was then that he noticed this strange light was heading in his direction.

He would later estimate that the object was moving around 50 miles per hour and although extremely bright, it did not appear to cast a glow below. This is, once more, a discreet detail that often comes up in other UFO reports.

As the witness watched events unfold, they would note how the object came to a stop over the top of the plant and remained in a stationary position.

So Silent You Could “Hear A Pin Drop From 20 Yards!”

The witness would remain where they were watching the object as it remained over the plant. They would estimate it was around 100 feet above the top of the building. They would further estimate they were currently a little over 200 feet away from the object and the plant over which it hovered.

From this relatively close distance, the witness would satisfy themselves that the object was not a plane or helicopter, at least not a conventional one. Aside from the fact that there were no lights on the underside of the object as was standard with all aircraft, there was absolutely no noise whatsoever coming from the hovering craft. In fact, not only was there no sound from the strange object, there appeared to be no noise anywhere around at all. The witness would recall that you could hear “a pin drop from 20 yards).

The more they observed the object they began to contemplate if it was, in fact, a secret “stealth” helicopter. Particularly as the plant over which it hovered was a high-security facility.

They continued to stare at the object attempting to focus behind the light in order to see the details of the object itself. They would, however, find this difficult to do due to the brightness. They would, though, make out what appeared to be a “star” on top of the craft. This, according to the witness, suggested that a light of some kind was likely on top of the object.

The witness would remain where they were and continued to watch the craft for a further 10 minutes.

From “Zero Speed To Comet Type Speed!”

The longer they stared at the craft, the more unnerved and disturbed they became. They also noticed, as well as the absolute silence, there was a sudden coldness they hadn’t noticed previously. After several more moments of watching the bizarre object, they would make the decision to take a step closer and investigate further.

After several more moments contemplation the witness took a step toward the strange object. By the time they had taken their third step, the object vanished into the night sky with lightning speed. The witness would recall that it went from “zero speed to comet type speed”. And all the while the object remained completely silent.

An image of a UFO in space

Just what might these strange objects be?

This display made the witness dismiss any notion that the object might have been a top-secret military aircraft. In terms of the technology they witnessed in the early hours that cold winter morning, the witness would state that there was “no way that we have gone that far”.

The witness would claim that although it was over 20 years since the incident (at the time they reported it) they still think about the strange and bizarre night regularly. Perhaps interestingly, despite the certainty of the witness that they witnessed something otherworldly on the night in question, they remained “reluctant” when believing other people’s accounts.

Extraterrestrial Or Not, What Is The Reason For These Sightings?

The two accounts we have examined here are both intriguing in their own right. And both suggest, like many others, some kind of reconnaissance or surveillance mission. Whether we accept the intelligence behind these strange crafts are extraterrestrial or top-secret government agents, what exactly are they wanting to know? And why?

While the first sighting appeared to be one where the group would witness some kind of town-wide event in terms of the strange light beams shooting outward over the area, the second appeared to be a case of a definite targeting of a specific facility. Was this due to the alleged nuclear connection?

We have examined before the increased number of UFO sightings over such nuclear facilities. And what’s more, these sightings often offer the same details – that of a glowing or metallic object seemingly hovering directly over its target location. It is certainly something to keep in mind as we continue as a collective to examine and reexamine the plethora of UFO reports that make up the publicly available accounts. Accounts that appear to only keep on increasing.

How many more accounts remain in the minds of those who witnessed them due to a fear of ridicule if they were to make them public? Might we reach a time when such witnesses feel assured enough to come forward with their accounts? And what details might we find when they do? Might we begin to see a fuller picture as far as the UFO and alien question is concerned? And what might that picture look like? As ever, the questions continue to come, with each tentative answer producing just more questions.

Check out the video below. It looks at some of the strangest and most intriguing UFO sightings on record.

Marcus Lowth

Marcus Lowth is a writer with a love for UFOs, aliens, and the Ancient Astronaut Theory, to the paranormal, general conspiracies, and unsolved mysteries. He has been writing and researching with over 20 years of experience.

Marcus has been Editor-in-Chief for several years due to his excellent knowledge in these fields. Marcus also regularly appears as an expert on radio talk shows including Troubled Minds and Unexplained Radio discussing these topics.

Read Marcus' full bio.

You can contact Marcus via email.

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1 Comment

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  • Dragonlady43 says:

    “The witness would claim that although it was over 20 years since the incident (at the time they reported it) they still think about the strange and bizarre night regularly.”

    I’m an experiencer. They will never forget no matter how much time passes. It is never out of my thoughts! There is rarely a day I don’t think about it.

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