You are reading this file from

From (Chris Rutkowski) Sat Jan 15 15:56:32 1994


From: (Chris Rutkowski)

Newsgroups: alt.paranet.ufo

Subject: Crop Watcher #16

Summary: CW 16

Keywords: crop circles

Message-ID: <2h9la0$>

Date: 15 Jan 94 20:56:32 GMT

Organization: The University of Manitoba

Lines: 2841


The Crop Watcher

Issue 16 March/April 1993

Old Sarum, Salisbury, 1992

(Photo: Richard Wintle)


Doug Bower speaks out ... Ted Phillips' Physical Trace Catalogue

... Swangate Update ... Crop Circles in Japan ... Government

Cover-Ups ... Fire in the Sky ... UFO Chases Helicopter ... The

First 1993 Circles ...


Welcome to your new Crop Watcher. As you can see, I've finally

splashed out on a new home computer so from now on there'll be no

more annoying changes of type face or distressing gaps where I

couldn't find something to fill in the gaps between articles. It

also means I can finally get back at Bob Kingsley by boasting

about my new machine - the Volvo of the PC world - its a 486

DX-33 PC with a 170 Megabyte Hard Disk and 4 Megabytes RAM. Crop

Watcher is produced using Microsoft Publisher but the PC also

holds Lotus 123 spreadsheets as well as all the usual Windows

utilities and DOS. The master copies are printed on a Hewlett

Packard Deskjet 500 printer. Now that I don't have to rely on

friends to print off the masters we'll be able to keep to a

better publication schedule. Thanks to all of you for being so

patient with our first 15 issues.

In this issue we have some interesting material which, to some,

proves beyond doubt that there IS a genuine crop circle

phenomenon involving a poorly understood natural phenomenon.

This is taken from Ted Phillips' Physical Trace Catalogue (see

pages 20-26), which will be reproduced over our next few issues.

We also have the second part of Doug Bower's highly revealing

interview with UFO Sweden's Clas Svahn. In this interview Doug

justifies his 13 years of hoaxing and points the finger of

accusation at the cerealogists for their incitement of mass crop

circle hoaxing and mass trespass. We also have news on crop

circles in Japan as well as a Swangate Update.

Crop Circles Have Arrived

Alan Watson of Banbury has informed me of the first crop circle

to appear in 1993 - an 18 metre diameter circle at Aston Rowant,

just north of the M40 in Oxfordshire (OSGR SU 717984). Alan first

saw the circle on the afternoon of Sunday 2nd May as he drove

northwards along the M40. The circle was in oilseed rape and

exhibited a 2 metre diameter central portion that was untouched.

The rape was shoulder height but the crop was broken and

damaged - a sure sign of hoaxing. Around the rim stems were laid

down in a distinctive manner that contradicted the flow within

the circle- almost as if the hoaxers had laid the outer rim first

and then worked inwards. Readers will recall that in CW10 & 12

we exposed the activities of the Amersham group of hoaxers - seen

creating the Butlers Cross quintuplet and caught leaving a field

near Amersham shortly after a newly formed circle was discovered.

Hoaxers frequently choose sites to obtain maximum publicity -

this formation is in full sight of the motorway, although Alan

tells me that the formation is invisible to people walking along

nearby public footpaths. Also, this sounds like another weekend

job - a few pints at the nearest pub then down the farm for some

rolling around. Well, something like that anyway. If you see

circles in your area please let us know, we need to keep track of

the hoaxers and we are keeping the NFU informed of developments.

Our thanks to Alan for his help. Also, Terence Meaden tells me

that a 50 foot circle with 7 small outliers appeared near

Saltford in Avon at the beginning of May. Without wishing to

point any fingers it seems strange to me that there is a very

active local crop circle group. Perhaps the "aliens" are trying

to tell us something ?

The Cerealogist

Well, for those of you who read this sad rag I expect you won't

have been too surprised to see the torrent of abuse and invective

printed on page 26 of the winter issue by Editor John Michell.

Those of us on the meteorological wing of the crop circle

movement discovered long ago that to dare to question the wisdom

of the cerealogists was to invite a public flaying at every

opportunity. In his revealing interview Doug Bower comes to

pretty much the same conclusion that we did, that such tactics

come from people who seem to have lost more than just their

public credibility. The more sane UFOlogists get used to it, so

I'm not going to become involved in a slanging match. However, as

John Michell still refuses to withdraw errors of fact made in his

"studious" magazine, here, for the record, is the letter I sent

to Michell on November 10th 1992:-

"Dear John, I was very amused to read your comments about how Dr

Meaden has apparently 'left the [crop circle] scene', and how The

Crop Watcher has 'bravely survived the decline of the plasma

vortex theory to which it was originally dedicated and now makes

a wider, humbler, more questioning approach to the phenomenon'.

You seem to have an uncanny knack at rewriting crop circle

history whilst avoiding some of the more unpalatable truths about

the crop circle phenomenon. Despite what you say Dr Meaden and

his meteorological collaborators (eg Kikuchi, Ohtsuki and Snow)

are still conducting scientific research into the plasma vortex

theory, having recently presented a paper to the Twentieth

General Assembly of the International Union of Geodesy and

Geophysics in Vienna. Despite what you say I am still happy to

support a meteorological explanation for simpler crop circle

patterns whilst continuing to entertain the delicious irony that

many classic UFO cases may represent encounters with a mechanism

similar to that being investigated by Meaden and his colleagues.

I hope therefore that you will allow me to set the record

straight following your somewhat inaccurate comments.

Despite what you say it is a matter of public record that Jenny

Randles and myself have always considered hoaxing as a reasonable

solution for at least some crop circles. We were the only

researchers to write a book where an entire chapter was devoted

to crop-circle hoaxing. On page 73 of this book we stated

'In our view, there is growing evidence that SOME aspects of the

circles mystery are the product of .... a controlled hoax'. We

also discussed hoaxing in numerous media interviews dating back

to the mid 1980s. Unlike others we also debated the strength of

eye witness testimony, suggesting that perhaps some crop circles

were meteorologically produced whilst others were hoaxes. Our

evaluation of the evidence has now been proven beyond doubt,

although I accept that we have had to revise our estimate of the

extraordinary degree of hoaxing as new evidence emerges. It has

been very disappointing to see the vicious and libellous

dismissal of the Doug and Dave claim by your chief correspondent,

George Wingfield, the former 'consultant' to Flying Saucer


Thanks to Wingfield's actions other researchers of a more

moderate disposition have found it difficult to evaluate this

staggering claim. Nevertheless as the Doug and Dave story emerges


has come to accept the claim that Doug Bower and Dave Chorley

made between 200 and 250 circles across central southern England

since the mid 1970s. We also accept that the United Bureau of

Investigation made many dozens of formations across Wiltshire. We

believe that as many as 99 per cent of all modern-day circles

have been created by the numerous groups of hoaxers we have been

exposing in The Crop Watcher during the past two years.

Strangely, this unwelcome evidence has not appeared in The

Cerealogist. Why not ? It seems that as the crop circle subject

dies a slow and lingering death, those researchers who

consistently ignored eye witness testimony and crucially

important historical evidence are also guilty of encouraging mass

crop circle hoaxing around the globe. This seems to be a fitting

epitaph for those flying saucer believers who refused to learn

the lessons of history and who succeeded in blackening UFOlogy's

name once more. In fifty years time scholars will rediscover the

crop circle debate and will cast judgement on us all. When this

time comes it will be interesting to see how The Cerealogist, The

Circular and The Crop Watcher will be judged by historians of the

subject. I for one have no regrets. The real question now is do

you. Yours, etc."

Well, John Michell seemed to take exception to this submission,

and eventually responded on December 4th 1992:-

"Dear Paul, Thank you for your letter. I was inclined to print

it, but then I saw your mendacious [ie dishonest, PF] references

to The Cerealogist having yearnings towards extraterrestrialism,

being super-naturally inclined and so on. Since you should know

full well that we have no yearnings or inclinations in any

direction except towards assessing the evidence in search of the

truth, your remarks are wilfully spiteful and unwarranted. I

shall comment on them in the next issue.

You should acknowledge that we pioneered hoax theory [sic],

publishing the first full statement of it, by Peter Williams, at

a time when you were thinking and writing only about the 'plasma

vortex', and running the Ken Brown series [sic]. Many readers

have complained that we give far too much time to hoax theory

[sic]. I merely try to reflect what is going on and am not, like

you, a True Believer in anything [sic !!!].

I shall include a kind reference to The Crop Watcher in the next

issue, especially Peter Rendall's amusing piece, hoping that all

continues well with it and you. Despite claiming 'a Mystery

Solved' I am sure you are as confused and uncertain about this

phenomenon as is every other honest person. You should not be

afraid to say so. Yours Sincerely, JM." So, according to John

Michell, "The Cerealogist" has "no yearnings or inclinations in

any direction except towards assessing the evidence in search of

the truth". Why then has "The Cerealogist" failed to interview

the two dozen or so eye witnesses, or the numerous farmers we

have spoken to who recall seeing crop circles on their parent's

land dating back to the 1930s and beyond ? If "The Cerealogist"

has "no yearnings or inclinations in any direction" why has

Michell failed to publish (or comment on) the map we published in

CW12 describing the two dozen (groups of) hoaxers known to be at

work in Southern Britain ? And if "The Cerealogist" is really

only interested in "assessing the evidence in search of the

truth", why does the extensive pre 1980 evidence not form a

central part of that analysis ? We invite readers to write in

and comment on Michell's facetious claims. But there is more

.... Astonishingly, Michell claims that his magazine "pioneered

the hoax theory" by publishing pro-hoax articles by Peter

Williams [issue 3, pages 10-11, Spring 1991] and both Williams

and Ken Brown [issue 5, pages 11-14, Winter 1991/92]. Michell

must have forgotten the fact that Jenny Randles first discussed

hoaxing as a solution in Northern UFO News way back in

July/August 1984 ["Mr Mossop (the farmer) ought to seriously

consider suing the press and daring them to print such twaddle

again next July/August when (I safely predict) some other moron

will fake more 'landing pad marks' to get his name in the

papers."]. Michell also seems to have forgotten that in July 1991

(two months before Doug and Dave went public) I had dismissed "up

to 50 per cent" of British crop circles as hoaxes (in The

Independent on Sunday, 18th August 1991).

I find it difficult to understand how John Michell can have

missed the article I wrote in April 1987 in the newsstand

magazine Exploring The Supernatural (Vol 1 Issues 9 and 10),

where I debated crop circle hoaxing at length. I stated "This

quandary leaves us with one of two possibilities. Either all

circles are created by hoaxers, and there are several teams of

hoaxers at work in several countries over many years; or else

only a few circles are created by hoaxers, and the majority must

be caused by something else." My article discussed the 1983 hoax

by the Daily Mirror at Westbury, and the possible collusion of

the Daily Mail in the suspected-hoax at Alfriston [now known to

be one of Doug and Dave's creations]. I also queried the

authenticity of the 1986 Childrey circle [also claimed by Doug

and Dave] as well as the Headbourne Worthy single. I concluded

"If it can be shown that complex formations have the same

temporal and spatial distributions as the single established

circles, then it seems that a 'natural' theory (in particular the

whirlwind theory) can reasonably account for all but the proven

hoaxed circles. If, on the other hand, no complex sets can be

found pre 1980, then I for one, will remain sceptical of Dr

Meaden's explanation for the more complex mystery circles that

have been appearing with such regularity across the wheatfields

of Southern England over the past few years."

Well, you just have to give Michell credit for re-writing crop

circle history so comprehensively. But next Michell falsely

claims that when Peter Williams' article was published The Crop

Watcher was "writing only about the 'plasma vortex'". Strange,

because in issues 1-4 (all published well before Williams' first

article) we dismissed the Seghill Key as a "hoax" (CW2), we

featured a "Hoaxer's Diary" (CW3) whilst Jenny Randles produced

compelling evidence that numerous circles were hoaxes in her

"Informed Circles" articles. Of course Michell also ignores the

whole chapter devoted to crop circle hoaxing in our book "Crop

Circles, A Mystery Solved" with his ad hominem attack.

To round off this slur Michell implies that I am not an honest

person. For someone who has spent eight full issues desperately

trying to keep unwelcome evidence from his readers this is the

action of someone who has seen his fondest dreams exposed as a

fantasy. Given the very obvious links between "The Cerealogist"

and flying saucer believers like George Wingfield and Colin

Andrews I refuse to withdraw my claim about "yearnings towards

extra-terrestrialism". As Kevin McClure says in the current issue

of "The Wild Places", The Cerealogist encapsulates "every-thing

you wanted to know about human fortitude in the face of

adversity...", a magazine that has resulted in the "true

believers... putting up the shutters. ... To put it simply,

forget about genuine research and investigation, there's another

religion in the making, and it's as daft as the rest of them...".

As for his other comments, well yes we certainly did make

mistakes. We were quite wrong to accept the commonly-held belief

that it was impossible to walk through mature crop at night

without leaving a trail. We were also wrong not to undertake

extensive experimentation of hoax techniques back in the mid

1980s. And we were wrong not to give up our careers and sit in

the copse at Cheesefoot Head every night throughout the summer

with a pair of infra-red binoculars waiting for Doug and Dave to

do their dirty deeds. We'll be examining our mistakes in a future

issue to see what can be learnt.

Finally Michell dismisses our conclusion that only a few circles

might be created by wind vortices as an argument that is

"obviously artificial, for there [is] no reason to single out any

particular kind of formation as more or less genuine than any

other." Once again Michell conveniently forgets the fact that we

have uncovered numerous claims by farmers who are insistent that

either they have seen simple crop circle patterns being formed by

atmospheric vortex mechanisms or who insist that their parents

and grand-parents knew that simple crop circle patterns were

caused by the wind. Some of this evidence was uncovered by Ian

Mrzyglod before Andrews and Delgado began claiming in "Flying

Saucer Review" that the phenomenon was the result of a paranormal

force directed by an "unknown intelligence". The fact that this

critical evidence has been ruthlessly kept from The Cerealogist's

readership says more than I could ever say about Michell's

Editorial policy. So, come on John, stop the insults and start

debating the evidence. No one likes a bad loser ... PS If

readers want to see what John Michell really believes about the

crop circles, read his Editorial in issue 4. "The intelligence

behind the phenomenon is beyond our knowledge and control, ... we

are inescapably subject to its influence. That influence is

clearly benign, even god-like...A great power has arisen...We can

now see something of what the ancients meant when they spoke of

revelation...". Golly, for a moment there I thought I was reading

Flying Saucer Review !!

"The View From The Hill"

The Occasional Diary of a Cropwatcher

by Peter Rendall, R.N., M.I.5, S.W.A.N., V.E.S.T.A.S.,

B.R. "And Now For Something Completely Different..."

Have you ever seen that bit in the Monty Python film 'Life of

Brian', where Brian, pursued through the desert by hordes of

followers who think he's the Messiah, turns to them and shouts

'Look, I'm NOT the Messiah, now please go away' ? If you saw it

then you'll know what happens next; a silence falls over the

crowd, then a small voice says: 'Only the true Messiah would deny

his divinity...'. In bewilderment, Brian cries: 'What chance does

that give me ? Alright. I AM the Messiah, now GO AWAY!'. This, of

course, only brings the crowd to its feet, screaming: 'He IS the

Messiah!'. Its a Catch 22. In the eyes of his followers, Brian is

most definitely the Messiah, and nothing he can say or do will

convince them otherwise. What, you are probably asking yourself,

has this got to do with Crop Circles ? Actually the answer is

quite a lot. The subject itself has descended into slapstick

comedy, with claim and counter claim as to what is 'genuine' and

what is 'not genuine' being subjected to parry and thrust across

the tables of various groups and individuals the length and

breadth of the country. One of the foremost theories now being

given space in various Circles and UFO magazines is that old

cliche, the Government Cover-Up, or GCU for short. GCUs are the

equivalent of Brian's desperate cry when told that 'Only the true

Messiah would deny his divinity. It works something like this:

Desperate to keep hold of their sinking subject, and faced with

overwhelming (to most sensible folk) evidence that the whole

thing has been one giant joke, the 'believers' start to cry out

GCU ! When the non-believers snort with derision and say 'Of

course there's no GCU - the whole thing's just a hoax; circles

are made by people !', then the True Believers cry: 'That's just

what an agent of a GCU WOULD say ! That PROVES its a GCU !' .

You just can't win !!

Somewhat naturally this brings me to the latest offerings in 'The

Cerealogist' by the CCCS Court Jester George Wingfield. In it,

George Wingfield recycles the same old argument which I've

outlined above, bringing 'Men-in-Black' (MIBs) in as well. As

usual, he's his normal rude self. I don't propose to enter into

any sort of argument or discourse about the meeting between the

'well known meteorologist', CCCS' Ken Brown and the 'MIBs', which

Wingfield reads so much into. Wingfield's story belongs to the

script of 'Life of Brian' and any denials will only be met with

the usual cries of GCU !

But while we're on the subject of cover-ups, let me not allow

Wingfield to get away scot-free: he's as guilty of covering up

things as the people he accuses of operating on behalf of the


Let me take you back, George, to the formation which appeared

near Wroughton in 1992 [Isn't that the one that George was going

to "eat his shirt in public" over ? PF] . I'd been to the 'Waggon

& Horses' for lunch that day, and met up with photographer

(sorry, I meant to say Government Agent) Rob Irving. Irving told

me of the Wroughton formation and accompanied me to the site.

There we met you, George, remember ? You were acting watch-dog to

ensure no-one else entered the formation and corrupted it. When

we inspected the formation I quite clearly found several obvious

'footprints', which I pointed out to you. Rob Irving witnessed

this. You summarily dismissed the footprints, and later tried to

make out that they'd been made by Rita Goold and Arthur Mills

when they discovered the formation. You weren't able to comment

on the fact that neither Rita or Arthur's feet matched the prints

found at Wroughton. Do you remember Baltic Farm 1992 as well ?

When I arrived you were proclaiming to all who could hear that

the formations there had been 'made in the space of half-an-hour

that afternoon whilst a farm-worker was nearby'. And do you

remember me advising you to have a word with Busty Taylor ? You

must have spoken to Busty later, George, because you discovered

that the formations in question had been seen the day before when

Taylor flew over the area. I found this out by talking to several

members of the Beckhampton Group before going to Baltic Farm.

There was no way that those circles could have been made that

afternoon under the nose of the farmworker; rather that the

farmworker hadn't noticed the formations when he drove down the

field, but saw them when he drove back and ASSUMED they hadn't

been there when he first passed that way. Obviously you took my

advice and the mistakes didn't get a mention in your 'Circular'

article later. But then neither did you mention that I'd saved

you from making a complete ass of yourself on that occasion.

(***) Having mentioned these little incidents I must now mention

that I have been made aware of letters which Wingfield has

circulated to all CCCS Council Members, in which he names the

people who he is convinced have been making hoax formations.

These hoaxers are, of course, working on behalf of the

Government.. etc, etc. I don't feel inclined to pass comment on

these allegations either, because my denial of involvement (yes,

he names me as being a hoaxer !) will only lead into another

round of the 'Life of Brian' syndrome, and only time will tell

who is the REAL Messiah.

So, what of the future for CERES ? I'm glad to announce that

reports of CERES' demise have been greatly exaggerated, to coin a

phrase. CERES has now whittled down the number of circles

believed to be the result of a Meaden vortex to probably about 1

% of known formations. The group intend to carry out archive

research in some depth, accepting the criticism levelled at us by

the Wessex Skeptics in times past. We've accepted that we have,

in the past, been 'conned' by the hoaxers and are that much the

wiser for it. I believe we can agree with MOST other interested

parties in as much as we accept that the subject has been

completely contaminated with hoaxes, which makes field study a

bit of a lost cause. But then, if I'm a Government Agent, I would

say that wouldn't I ?

So, whilst some continue to delve deep into the realms of

mysticism, and George Wingfield entertains us all with his pig's

bladder and silly jokes, some of us will continue to think back

to those balmy summers of the late 1980s/early 1990s and, with

perhaps just a feint sigh of regret, turn to getting on with the

more mundane things in life. PR. *** PF Notes: This isn't the

first time that George Wingfield, or John Michell, or any of the

alien-intelligence believers, have omitted to give credit for

other people's work. Remember it was Wingfield who claimed in a

letter to Flying Saucer Review that it was his research that

exposed the highly dubious nature of Frank Barnes' claim to have

seen a "giant grey spaceship-like object" creating a crop circle

at Cheesefoot Head. Nowhere in Wingfield's letter did he mention

the fact that it was my research that had exposed the glaring

problems with the case, not Wingfield's research two years later.

Then there was Wingfield's claim in the Somerset press (Feb 27th

1992) that he had unmasked the fraudulent story by "Dave

Firestar" that he had seen a multi-coloured UFO creating a circle

at Butleigh Wootton in 1991. Again there was no mention of the

fact that it was CERES who discovered that the circle had been

seen being made by hoaxers and the police had been called and

caught the hoaxers red-handed (for a full account see CW13).

Just what is it with these rude, so-called researchers that they

repeatedly refuse to refer to other people's work ? The

Cerealogist (no 8 page 9) discusses the circles at

Szekesfehervar in Hungary without the slightest mention of the

fact that our own Jenny Randles visited this site and

discovered that two local youths had confessed to having made

the circles (See CW14 pages 7-10) Such actions only serve to

underline the true extent of the public deception being

perpetrated by these so-called "cerealogists". PF.

An Interview with Doug Bower

The Man Who Claims to have

Invented the Crop Circles

(Continued from Crop Watcher 15)

SVAHN: Some people say you were paid for (making) all these

circles. BOWER: We had a small sum but not a great deal of

money, no, no. We had lots of interviews over the telephone, we

did chat shows and we did TV interviews (and) we did two

demonstrations. The TODAY newspaper wanted us to do a demon-

stration in a field of corn at Sevenoaks in Kent, and when that

was complete they telephoned Mr Pat Delgado, who was the leading

researcher at that time, they telephoned him and asked him if he

would care to come down to Kent that afternoon and tell the

farmer whether he considered it a genuine circle or not; and Mr

Delgado walked into the field - we were in hiding , we were up

the road about 4 miles out of the way - and Pat Delgado walked

into the field, apparently - the farmer told me afterwards - and

he said "Its the finest thing I've ever seen in my life", he

said, "its absolutely genuine", and he didn't really want to

leave it for quite a while; (but) eventually he did leave to go

home, and we were brought back in view, the helicopter took the

photographs from the air, and on the following Sunday we all

agreed that we would go round to his home, which was the day

before the news was to break in the newspaper on the Monday,

(and) we would break the news gently to him so that he wouldn't

have a heart attack because of all the hard work that he'd put

in for many many years; and this was decided on, so the

photographer and journalist went round to his house first,

knocked on his door and told him that "We've got some News about

the corn circles for you, we've got two chaps outside in the

car..", we were round the corner, so when we eventually arrived

at his house he immediately recognised us because David (Chorley)

and I had always met them, shaking hands with them up on the

hills each night for years, and of course we were gleaning

information from them for many years and he immediately

recognised us and asked us in, and he gave a bit of a speech and

he said, "To be quite honest," he says, "... I'm quite relieved

its all over", and (then) his daughter interfered and she said,

"I think we'd better ring your partner", which was Mr Colin

Andrews, "... and get him over here". He came over and, of

course, when Pat Delgado broke the News to him he was absolutely

furious (but) within 2-3 days Pat Delgado had retracted all his

statements and said that it was so dark when he arrived at the

field [at Sevenoaks] at half-past four in the afternoon that he

didn't know what he was looking at - or words to that effect -

and (that) "... Everybody makes mistakes so it wasn't a genuine

circle afterall", but up until that time Pat Delgado said it was

genuine and he thought that the TODAY newspaper was going to

quote him as being the expert once again to looking at one of the

finest circles and patterns he'd ever seen, but little did he

know that in 2 days time that the whole world would know that it

was Dave and I that had done all the circles... [correcting

himself] ... not ALL the circles, as I say, (but) SOME of the

circles -but that particular one we did [sic], and then of course

we did a demonstration for the media at Chilgrove in Sussex,

where there were so many people trampling over that after we did

it that they called it 'a pathetic mess', which was a bit unfair


SVAHN: It was a typical circle (in) the beginning ?

BOWER: Oh yes, that was the pattern - the ladder circle - that

we were doing, yes... SVAHN: But it was not 'a mess' when you

made it ?

BOWER: No, not really, no. The only thing is that the corn was

over ripe and instead of the ears of the corn being straight up

they were curled over, consequently when the corn was (laid) down

the ears of the corn were coming up; but of course everyone was

trampling over (the corn), there were about 20 film crews there

trampling over it - I mean this is what's done the damage over

the years, you see the methods that David and I used to put these

circles down with the sticks did not damage the crops in any way

whatsoever. The only damage that was done to the crops was the

hundreds of people that would go into the farmer's fields,

trampling on it and destroy-ing it. In fact the farmer at

Sevenoaks when we did the demonstration there, the next day he

put his combine harvester in and he salvaged every grain of

corn, but no one had walked on this you see.

SVAHN: Did you at any time leave tracks straight into the circle

that later on was explained as early viewers entering it ?

BOWER: What do you mean ? The underlying paths?

SVAHN: No, sometimes you can see a circle and a track leading in

from the road. BOWER: Yes, well instead of the general public

walking down the tramlines, the tractor lines, to look at the

circle, they were walking through the growing corn, so

consequently when the photographs were taken a week or two later

there were all the pathways leading into it and the farmers were

getting very annoyed about it.

SVAHN: And this you must have been aware of ?

BOWER: Oh yes, but there was nothing we could do about that.

SVAHN: But I mean you didn't take advantage of this and

sometimes leave a track by yourself ? BOWER: No, no. We went in

without any damage whatsoever. We didn't want anyone to know that

we'd been into that field at all. We wanted to let them think

that either something had come down from above without no tracks

whatsoever ... [sic]

SVAHN: I'm very curious about Barbury Castle and the Mandelbrot

formation. BOWER: Well the Mandelbrot set was Cambridge students

wasn't it. Its obvious really, that's what that was - and I

should think people along the same sort of lines were doing the

other complicated ones as well. I think it was getting a little

bit out-of-hand really, 'cos I mean Dr Terence Meaden completely

disbanded the pictograms in the end.

SVAHN: Have you done any circles this year ?

BOWER: No. We're retired now [laughs].

SVAHN: And you're not planning to write a book or something ?

BOWER: Well yes, we'll probably write a book. Its taking time

but I suppose its just as well that we didn't launch a book on

the market in September because there's not very many people that

have accepted our story, so I think [sic] and if we can prove, I

suppose one day we will have a meeting with these people to show

them and explain to them. You see, at the demonstration we did at

Chilgrove, we offered them a meeting with all of them - in camera

- to show them everything that we'd used - show and tell them

everything that we'd done - but they refused !

SVAHN: Which ones ?

BOWER: That was Mr Colin Andrews and Mr Pat Delgado. They said

they didn't want anything to do with it in camera at all, but I

suppose really, when you think about it, I suppose really they

didn't want egg on their face really, did they, because this is

what it will amount to, its what they've made of it over the

years. I've no objection to what people can find in the circles,

if they say there's energy there or they get some bit of pleasure

from it; but its the conning of the people out of all this

money - I mean its a very lucrative industry now, with all the

books that have been published and the meetings and things. I

mean we have a three day [CCCS] seminar in Winchester shortly,

that's # 160 each to attend that, but I mean its a lot of money,

and you get people coming from America and overseas, there's all

their air fares, their hotel expenses, because they've been made

to believe that this is something genuine. We've tried to tell

them that its NOT something genuine at all its US, this is US

that's done it !

SVAHN: So how do you feel about the accusations that you are

agents and government spies ? BOWER: [Incredulously] Yes ! I

know, its incred-ible what we hear and what we read about I mean

its a ... its given me a good insight into the human being since

this has all taken place because I really didn't expect anything

like this, with all the remarks that have been passed and the

lengths that they've gone to. And I hear that they even got in

touch with the CIA in America and all this business, its

ridiculous really isn't it ! But there you are, its what THEY'VE

made of it, not what we've done. We've not conned anyone out of

any money whatsoever and we're very sad to think that its reached

these proportions, and its even getting greater by the day isn't

it really. But no one wanted to accept our story simply because

being a lucrative industry they were a little bit reluctant to

let go of it I suppose.

SVAHN: What about this curious little thing the 'MBF Services'

here (that) I've heard about ? BOWER: That was just a joke as

far as the Editor was concerned. It was just something that he

put on the bottom of the story.

SVAHN: Do you know what it stands for ?


SVAHN: I've heard (that) it stands for Not Another Circle on My

Bloody Farm. BOWER: [Laughs] Oh is it ! Well that could be, but

They won't believe that.

SVAHN: Its fictitious ?

BOWER: Yes, oh yes, of course it is, yes. But They don't want

to believe anything at all, I mean to take for instance the story

of the grasshopper warbler, which is a bird - a bird that sings

in this country - you might have them in Sweden I don't know -

but I'm also a wildlife sound recordist, and I've spent many

years going out in the evenings recording the sounds of wildlife

for posterity, and I'm quite conversant with different sounds

that birds and animals make. Well David and I attended a meeting

in Winchester one evening which was being put over by the so-

called researchers, and during the evening's programme after

showing some slides and things, one man [George Wingfield, PF]

related the story of how he heard this strange sound, which he

thought was alien, and I knew immediately what he was listening

to, he didn't play the tape at the meeting he just spoke about

it, and I've been in the countryside at night and I've heard

grasshopper warblers - which is a trilling noise - and this bird

sings all night in the cornfields, and I've also heard it at

Cheesefoot Head, where, apparently, these researchers heard it at

the time, but the story goes that several members of the society

walked down into this cornfield this night and they heard this

sound and one man [George Wingfield] actually spoke to this bird

and asked the bird for him to make a circle for him: "Will you

please make me a circle". Well, I mean its absolutely ridiculous

really isn't it, but anyway they went back and they got a tape

recorder and they made a tape recording of this bird song and at

this meeting in Winchester, when it was question time at the end

of the meeting, I went up to the stage and I said"If you don't

mind me saying so, " I said, "... I'm a wildlife sound recordist

and I think the sound that you heard that evening was a

grasshopper warbler." Well, they almost threw me out of the hall

'cos they didn't want anything to upset what they thought it was.

Anyway, since then, this chappie [Ken Brown] has written away to

the British Library of Wildlife sounds in London and asked them

for a copy tape of a grasshopper warbler song, and he asked these

researchers to have a meeting one afternoon to bring their tape

that they'd recorded and play it alongside the tape that he'd got

from London, and of course they're identical, its the same bird;

and they STILL wouldn't believe that, so they said they'd have to

have it analysed properly, which he did and they STILL don't

believe it at all !!

SVAHN: Are there any people in the circle research business that

you think are doing a good job ? BOWER: Well they're all doing

research but I mean if they were to listen to us they wouldn't

need to bother anymore would they really. It seems ridiculous for

me for it to carry on, but as I say, if they're happy doing that

and they're not conning people out of a lot of money OK, let them

carry on, but I'm a little bit sad to think of the proportions

its got to over the years and little did we think when we made

that first circle that night that it would ever get to these

proportions, and I don't know where its going to end.

SVAHN: What about the Australian circles, I understand that you

lived in Australia ? BOWER: Well I lived in Australia from 1958

to 1966, which was eight years, and of course there was a report

of some UFO nests in Tully in Queensland I think, and I've always

been interested in that sort of thing and of course when Dave and

I were on the hill at Winchester one evening I remarked about the

saucer nests that were found in Queensland and I said "Let us put

a circle in the cornfield" and of course there it was...

SVAHN: But you never made any circles in Australia ?

BOWER: No, no, it didn't even enter my head then.

SVAHN: It was an inspiration for you ?

BOWER: That's right, yes.

SVAHN: The first one, the very first one in 1978, where was it ?

BOWER: That was at the bottom of Cheesefoot Head near

Winchester, that was the first one, that was quite a bit of fun

on our hands and knees that night, wondering the next day whether

it would be in the newspapers but it was 2 years before we got

any publicity at all.

SVAHN: Do you understand people that ask you for evidence all

the time, they want to know proof of what you are saying ?

BOWER: Well of course this is what they are asking, we would

have been able to tell them a lot had they accepted the meeting

we offered them last year at Chilgrove, which they refused, but

we will eventually have a meeting with them so that we CAN show

them once and for all, but it seems to me the type of people

that we're dealing with they're not going to believe anything at

all ! I think WHATEVER proof you give them, you can give them a

demonstration, which we've done, and they say "That's rubbish",

but you can show them all the items of tools and things you've

used, the sticks and the so-called things, and they still don't

want to believe that. They only want to believe what THEY want to

believe - which is bringing them in lots of money.

SVAHN: But you say you can remember nearly every single circle

you have made, or most of them ? BOWER: I can remember, even to

this day, every location that we went to over the thirteen years.

SVAHN: So you could produce a list ?

BOWER: I've got a map, I've got a map with a red spot for every

location and if we ever do have a meeting with these people I

shall ask them to bring the same map and for them to put a red

spot on every location that they know of - they've got records of

all this - and then someone can compare the two maps.

SVAHN: Would it be possible for us to see the map here ?

BOWER: No, I don't want to show that because I've not shown

anyone at all yet. It will be eventually shown, when we have a

meeting with these people, because we're not going to take this

laying down so-to-speak. We're going to show and convince these

people, if we can, that it WAS us that started this and the story

that we broke to the world last September [1991] is absolutely

true ! We can answer any question they would like to put to us,

we've got nothing to hide. Had we been making this up - which a

lot of them said it was a hoax story - had we been making this up

we'd have to be the finest actors in the world ! How can we be

confronted on TV and asked all sorts of questions if we didn't

know what we were talking about ? We've got nothing to hide at


SVAHN: But of course the map may be useless if you wait too

long, you have also have the chance to accumulate facts about the


BOWER: Well no I'm sure there's lots of formations whose

location has never been published in the books. Its no good

saying that you could have looked at all the books that we've

published because every circle that's been recorded hasn't been

put in the books. There's been lots and lots more and we know for

a fact that there's lots of circles that we've done that there's

never been any mention of at all in any of the books that have

been published.

SVAHN: How many could that be ?

BOWER: Well I don't know off hand. I haven't really gone into it

really, but there are quite a few, there must be. I mean Colin

Andrews has got a databank in his home of all the locations of

everything that they've looked at, we don't know of that

[information], but we know what we've done and we can show what

we've done eventually and if they don't want to believe it, well,

what can you do ? We've got to show them, all we can do is answer

their questions, show them these things that we've used. If they

don't believe that well I mean you can see what sort of people

we're up against.

SVAHN: But you never brought a camera or anything else to

record what you were doing ? BOWER: We used to go up the

following evening to look at what we'd done the night before,

because you couldn't see in the dark of course. We were quite

thrilled when we were getting towards Winchester to have a look

at the punchbowl to see what we'd done, and then of course if it

was useful we'd take a photograph of it.

SVAHN: Were there any circles that you were NOT satisfied with ?

BOWER: Sometimes they would go wrong and sometimes it was so

dark - there were only two occasions in the thirteen years that

we were doing circles - that it was so dark that we couldn't see

our feet - and we got into the field and we couldn't see our feet

- and we got into the field and we just couldn't see what we were

doing and we gave it up - but that was only two occasions. The

rest of the time, when we started doing some of the complicated

pictograms, you'd have to think a little bit more what you were

doing then; and sometimes you would go in the wrong direction

and you would realise then, once the corn was down you couldn't

pull it up anymore, and then we would either have to tread it

down in some sort of a pattern - but there were several occasions

when that happened. SVAHN: Can you mention any sites ?

BOWER: Well there was one at Pepperbox Hill near Salisbury. We

were doing the flower pattern then, which was the petals...

SVAHN: Which year was that ?

BOWER: That was last year [1991].

SVAHN: And what went wrong ?

BOWER: Two of the petals went wrong I think so we had to more-

or-less tread it down and we weren't very happy with that; and on

another occasion I think we were doing the four satellites when

the string got caught up with the top of the corn and gave us a

false reading on the string and we finished up doing five

satellites instead of four, but when you go back to look at it

the next evening you're pretty disgusted so you get away as

quickly as you can really.

SVAHN: What about the Celtic Cross ?

BOWER: That was the Wiltshire chappies did that [the United

Bureau of Investigation], we did the four satellites - North,

South, East & West, but the Celtic Cross - I don't know whether

they refer to that as the Celtic Cross do they ? I think its just

three [outer satellites], or just four ?

SVAHN: [Showing Bower a photograph] I meant this one.

BOWER: Oh, that's what they refer to as the Swastika.

SVAHN: Oh yes the swastika. Was it by your

hand ?

BOWER: Yes, we were the first ones to do that, but that

......... and we found the field in Wiltshire, we waited there

and we made the mark around first of all with the string, and we

put four markers in a cardboard cut out on the end of a stick,

which was the North, South, East & West, and then we had to go

directly to cross it, and the first way we went we went crooked,

and we said we've got to do something about that now, so we just

trod it down into sections, and then after that when the crop

circle book 'The Corn Circle Enigma' [sic !] was published, lo

and behold the circle that we did was on the front cover ! But we

were told later than that that there were two of these [swastika]

circles of the same design in that field and we assumed then that

the photograph that was on the front cover of the book was the

people from Wiltshire [the U.B.I.] that had copied our first

attempt and they made a better job of it than us and that was

what they used, but our first attempt went wrong.

SVAHN: The most famous - at least abroad I think - is the 1990

Alton Barnes [formation] . BOWER: Yes it was quite large it

generally consisted of corridors and circles really and outcrops,

but I've a funny suspicion that the farmer that charged a pound

to go in to that field two years running had something to do with

that. I won't say for sure but it seems very strange to me that

he would charge a pound to go into the same field two years on

the trot. Whether anything is going to happen this year I don't

know !

SVAHN: So you didn't make that one ?

BOWER: No, we've done nothing in the Beckhampton area at all.

SVAHN: This year [1992] (there's) a snail in the Alton Priors

field.... BOWER: Is there ? No, we're not doing anything like

that. We're not doing anything this year. SVAHN: And they are

charging a pound [for entry]

BOWER: Are they ? Already ? Oh, I didn't know that. That's news

to me. I think its looking a little bit ridiculous isn't it. Once

yes but not twice or three times. I mean the year the farmer at

Alton Barnes charged a pound to go in we went up the road three

quarters of a mile, there was another farmer charging a pound

to go and see some triangles, and another mile up the road from

him was another farmer charging a pound to go and see what he had

in a field, so it was becoming a bit of a racket really.

SVAHN: You never made (any) triangles of such things ?

BOWER: No. We didn't go much on triangles really [laughs].

SVAHN: What about the eye witnesses who are seeing - in broad

daylight - wind coming in over a field and making circles ?

BOWER: I've been on the middle of a hot air whirlwind, which you

get on summer days. In fact only this last year I was on top of

Pepperbox Hill near Salisbury, the corn had already been cut and

it was layered in layers of... streams of corn/straw... and (on)

this very hot day, and this hot air whirlwind came right across

in front of me, it picked up the straw - larger than a motor

car - and it took it up to about two thousand feet in the air,

going round and round and round, and it was twenty minutes before

the last of that bit of straw fell down, and I think anyone that

remarks about being in the centre of a whirlwind, I think its a

hot air whirlwind which you get in summer months, I've seen the

whirlwinds pick up bails of straw and they're quite heavy and

this is what happens really., but there's no such thing as a

genuine crop circle.

SVAHN: Isn't that too much to say really ?

BOWER: No, we started it in 1978. Where's the photographic

evidence of anything like our circles before 1978? When you

consider all the thousands of aircraft that flew over this

country during the war years where are any photographs of any

circles that looked as clear cut as what we were doing. There's

plenty of circles that look like circles, but the storm damage,

the wind and the rain create those that looked like circles. Even

today there's been a lot of damage in the past few weeks with the

heavy rain, and a lot of them look like circles, but they're not

clean cut (like) what we were producing, and the walls of the

corn are perfectly straight all the way round you see, but a

whirlwind doesn't act like that, its ragged edges and rough.

SVAHN: You sometimes see a little pyramid in the middle [of the

circle]... BOWER: Yes, yes. We can leave all those, yes.

SVAHN: And you've made them ?

BOWER: Yes, we've done the little bits in the middle, yes. You

just go around with your stick, and instead of the ... going

round all-the-way, you just leave a little clump. We've left

sometimes just six stalks of corn standing. Yes, there's all

sorts of things you can do really. Its been quite a lot of fun

over the years, we've had a good laugh about it. We've had a good

laugh making them and we've had a good laugh at the so-called

experts and what they've made of it buts its become a little bit

overdone I think - as the years have gone by. I don't like to

see people conned out of money and taken for a ride because we

know what it is, its only flattened corn afterall, isn't it !

SVAHN: You sometimes regret starting all this ?

BOWER: Um, not really. No, no. We've had a lot of fun out of

it, but as I say... I appreciate the amount of research and work

and expense that a lot of people have gone to, but we didn't ask

them to do that, its just what they've done on their own you see.

I'm just wondering whether after seven years - we'll say half-way

through the programme of doing circles - I'm just wondering

whether if we'd revealed it then, because I can remember saying

to David "One day, when we've got to release this News that its

US that's done it, I can tell you now, they're never going to

believe it"....

SVAHN: And you were right ?

BOWER: Yes !! And they're not believing it now. There's going to

be a lot of proof, somehow or another that we've got to produce.

We're putting our thinking caps on, there's got to be a lot of

proof shown to these people, 100 per cent proof its got to be,

and I'm just wondering what their reaction's going to be in our

attempt because we're not going to give up. Although I say we're

retired we are not going to give up, we've got to convince these

people and the people that have been taken for a ride - they're

the people I'm more concerned than anything - not the

researchers, the researchers have done all this themselves. Its

all their expense for travelling around the countryside measuring

them up or when they start charging people exorbitant amounts of

money to go into meetings, and all this sort of thing. I think

its very unfair to think that people are believing what they

[the researchers] are saying and... its just not on, and I don't

like that. And so we've made up our minds that whether it takes

one year, two years or five years we are going to eventually

knock these people down because we've just got to, because it was

us who started it and we would like to finish it nicely.

End of Interview

Readers will no doubt be interested to learn that in February I

finally met Doug Bower, the man who claims to have "invented" the

crop circle phenomenon in 1978. Doug and his wife Irene visited

my flat to review the video of Svahn's interview in the light of

Ken Brown's proposed book about the Doug and Dave story. As this

was the first time I'd ever met two M.I.5 agents I must admit to

being a little nervous beforehand, but I needn't have worried -

despite the despicable way he has been treated by the

"cerealogists" Doug Bower was friendly, amicable and every bit

the gentleman he has been portrayed by the press. There is not

the slightest doubt in my mind that Doug Bower is just the sort

of person to perpetrate a thirteen year UFO hoax and that he is

telling his story as he remembers it. His knowledge of the crop

circle story is so convincing that there can be little doubt

that during the mid 1980s myself, Meaden, Delgado and Taylor

modelled our concept of what a "real" circle looked like on the

basis of Doug and Daves' creations. This, of course, has very

serious implications for our claim that there is a genuine

naturally-produced crop circle. During this revealing

interview Doug Bower repeatedly made clear his intense dislike

of what the "cerealogists" have been doing. His references to

the "so-called researchers" and "experts" only serves to

demonstrate how much the cerealogists' have to explain to those

people who bought their books and the farmers whose land has been

repeatedly invaded by true believers in the crop circle mythology

that Flying Saucer Review's "consultants" created in the 1980s.

Doug's vow that he and Dave started the phenomenon and they would

finish the phenomenon must strike fear into the hearts of those

researchers who consistently denied a prosaic explanation and

instead led the public to believe in a damaging supernatural


It was clear too that although Doug and Dave attended BUFORA's

1987 Crop Circle Seminar at the London Business School neither

man had any idea that some researchers had consistently argued

for a rational solution. I was very surprised to discover that

Doug and Dave really had little concept of the "politics" of what

was happening during the 1980s. Doug Bower was quite astonished

at the vicious tactics that had been employed by the

"cerealogists" to silence their opponents and deceive the public.

There are a number of claims made in this interview which require

proper comment. Firstly, Doug gives a graphic account of the

cerealogist's Waterloo - the Sevenoaks demonstration and the

Chilgrove media circus. This account doesn't seem to differ

substantially from anything that has been published elsewhere.

Of course, Pat Delgado's claim that it was "too dark" to reach a

proper conclusion about the Sevenoaks formation is quite

untenable. Even on a stormy summers day at half past four in the

afternoon it would have been perfectly light. More

controversial is Doug's claim that his hoaxing caused "no damage"

to the crops. Readers will know from our previous issue that some

farmers believe that they suffer significant loss of income as a

direct cause of the crop being laid down. Doug Bower disagrees,

claiming that it is the hundreds of subsequent sightseers whose

trampling causes the damage. This sightseeing, according to Doug,

is due to the cerealogists leading the public to believe that

circles are a genuine anomaly. Perhaps readers might like to

comment on this claim ?

A more interesting revelation concerns Doug and Daves' offer to

meet Colin Andrews and Pat Delgado after the Chilgrove

demonstration to prove their case. This would have included a

showing of Doug's scrap-books, the map they have which proves

their claim as well as their circle-making equipment and designs.

Andrews and Delgados' refusal only lends added weight to Doug and

Daves' astonishing claim.

Clas Svahn was well briefed prior to visiting Doug at his home in

Southampton. I had already told him that according to John

MacNish the mythical MBF Services "press agency" was simply an

office joke at TODAY Newspaper. Allegedly MBF stood for "Not

Another Circle on My Bloody Farm". This is strangely

contradictory to the explanation offered by Lloyd Turner in "The

Circular" (April 1992 page 31). Despite this it is clear from

Doug's manner that the mythical MBF Services was just a joke as

far as he was concerned - further proof that George Wingfield's

allegations of a government conspiracy were desperate

fabrications based on flimsy evidence.

Throughout my eight years of research I have learnt time and time

again how the most committed "cerealogists" treat people who dare

to oppose their bizarre but lucrative fantasies. Doug Bower

paints a graphic picture of the way George Wingfield reacted

when he tried to point out that the Operation Whitecrow sound was

nothing more innocuous than a small bird. Doug Bower's

description of this event and the cerealogist's denial of the

facts is also discussed in Ken Brown's article "White Crow &

Grasshopper Warbler" ("The Cerealogist", issue 6, pages 3-4).

I just love the story of the "swastika" on the front cover of the

CCCS book "The Crop Circle Enigma". We hope to check with the

U.B.I. whether or not they were responsible for the formation or

whether it was Doug and Dave's original effort that was used. We

know that the U.B.I. sometimes copied Doug and Daves' circles

because in Schnabel and Irving's article in "The Independent"

magazine (29 August 1992) they recount the story of how Doug and

Daves' suspicions about a rival group of Wiltshire circle-makers

in the Avebury area led to their creation of the message

"COPYCATS" during 1990.

Finally Doug makes the claim that wind-produced vortices cannot

be sharply defined and that there are no photographs of pre 1978

crop circles. Of course this is really the critical issue for the

survival of the phenomenon, for if no photographs or contemporary

accounts of pre 1978 circles existed Doug would be fully

justified in suggesting that he and Dave Chorley actually

invented the phenomenon in 1978. As Doug Bower admits to basing

his hoax on the 1966 Tully event (which, according to the

evidence uncovered by Jenny Randles in her recent trip to

Queensland, was certainly not the first circle to appear in the

Tully area) this claim is immediately shown to be suspect. It

also makes assumptions about whether or not historical circles

exhibited the same morphology as their modern-day counterparts

and whether or not historical crop circles would attract the same

degree of attention prior to the development of the UFO myth in


More intriguingly Doug queries the similarity between circles

seen forming by witnesses and those that he and Doug created. The

latter, he claims, were always sharp edged, whilst the former

were always poorly defined. This, too, can be challenged, for it

could be argued that if Doug and Dave mimicked a natural sharp-

edged anomaly, then their fakes would be very difficult to

distinguish from "real" vortex-produced circles.

I have shown Doug the three pre 1978 photographs I have of crop

circle events (Wokurna, Bordertown and Rossburn) and Doug had to

admit he was both curious and surprised. I also described some

of the historic eye witness events listed in previous issues of

The Crop Watcher, cases which have been repeatedly suppressed by

other research groups. Doug Bower was totally unfamiliar with

this evidence or the consistency of what the eye witnesses claim

to see. It will be interesting to see if Doug changes his mind

about having "invented" the phenomenon or whether he will

continue to claim that naturally-produced circles exhibit poorly

defined edges and/or no swirl pattern.

If you want a copy of this 45 minute interview send US $ 30 to

AFU, P.O. Box 11027, S-600 11 Norrkoping, Sweden. Payment

preferably should be by IPMO or to Swedish giro account 49 07

14-3. I can guarantee that you will be impressed. Clas Svahn

comments on this interview and his 1992 visit to England in the

AFU Newsletter, 36, available from the same address.

Book Review

UFOs and How to See them

(Anaya Publishers, 1992, # 14.99, 144 pages)

by Jenny Randles

This superbly illustrated book is a must for anyone interested in

UFOs. With over 30 colour plates and another 70 black & white

plates this is one of the most glossy and attractive books on

the market. It introduces the subject of UFOs to a general

audience, particularly to those who have sightings to report and,

more importantly, to those who would like to have sightings. All

the major components of the UFO controversy are dealt with in

Jenny's usual lucid manner.

Jenny begins with a brief trip through UFOlogy's chequered past,

incorporating Ezekiel's sighting of a "whirlwind" (which Jenny

complains has been "hijacked by the experts to establish their

own version of the truth"), Foo Fighters, mystery airships and

ghost rockets. Enter Kenneth Arnold ! The late 1940s and early

1950s were a critical time in the development of the UFO

mythology that dominated the subject in years to come, and Jenny

treats this well.

Part II is devoted to identifying UFO sightings, Jenny's

favourite pastime ! All the major IFO stimuli are dealt with,

most with photographs. There is also a flow diagram to assist

witnesses to explain their own sighting. In this way the book

serves a useful purpose. Jenny completes Part I with a short

introduction to Skywatching - something that Jenny considers "a

very rewarding pastime, if properly organised, and if entered

into with the right expectations". In this section Jenny

touches on the kinds of theories that may be capable of

explaining naturally-produced UFOs - Persinger transients,

earth-quake zones, and the passage of frontal systems. As this

book is intended for a general readership rather than the

seasoned UFOlogist these topics are dealt with all too briefly.

Part II Hotspots examines 'The Most UFO-Haunted Places in the

World'. This is a selection of some of the more intriguing cases

reported in the literature, including the Gran Canaria 1976

sighting, the McMinnville 1950 daylight disk and the celebrated

disappearance of Frederick Valentich. Even the Ilkeley Moor

entity photo gains an appearance on page 108. Usually Jenny

touches on possible explanations for these cases but all too

often cases are presented but explanations glossed over. In my

view this only encourages readers to believe that UFO sightings

must be alien.

Several times throughout the book Jenny introduces crop circles.

There is an entire chapter devoted to this subject and I

recommend all serious researchers of the subject to examine Peter

Horne's photograph on page 83. This is the montage we discussed

in CW3 and CW4 of the 1972 circle discovered at Wokurna in South

Australia. Proof perhaps that crop circles predate Doug and Dave


Jenny's discussion of UFO photographs is rather brief for my

liking. Too many of the photographs in this book are known to be

dubious at best, yet only 7 pages are devoted to the illusion of

authenticity generated by photographic evidence. Finally Jenny

introduces the six most commonly reported UFO shapes, something

the US Air Force had great difficulty doing thirty years ago in

Project Blue Book's Special Report #14 . Here Jenny sensibly

suggests possible explanations for IFO sightings.

I suppose if I were to criticise this book at all I would

question whether or not UFOlogists need a book which, by its very

title, seems destined to produce more IFO reports to swamp the

UFO "message". I also feel that some of the cases are presented

in such a way that the reader is left in no doubt that some UFOs

must be alien in origin and that a more prosaic explanation is

still out-of-the-question. I doubt whether Jenny meant to give

this impression, but it is a criticism which will nevertheless be


Anaya Publishers, Freepost (NW5 630), London, NW1 0YW. # 14.99

incl p&p in the UK, add # 2.50 if you live elsewhere.

Is there a Skeleton in YOUR Cupboard ???

(If your name is Colin Andrews then YES you do !)

This is a new series of articles containing previously

unpublished documentary material from The Crop Watcher's vast

archives. We begin this series with a peep into the flurry of

correspondence between Paul Fuller and Colin Andrews in early

1988, more than a year before Andrews launched the best selling

"Circular Evidence" onto an unsuspecting market. This

correspondence arose after an astonishing article by Andrews in

Flying Saucer Review claiming numerous links between crop circles

and UFO sightings. Although I had known Andrews for nearly two

years this was the first time that I realised that Colin Andrews

adopted a pro-UFO explanation for the phenomenon. On February 8th

1988 I wrote a five page letter to Andrews appealing to him to

reconsider his position. Here are some excerpts from that first


"Dear Colin, I was concerned to read your recent article in FSR

about the circles and feel I must write to you to warn you about

the damage you are doing to your own credibility and that of

UFOlogy's credibility in general.

"As you know, I too believe that there are previously

unrecognised phenomena in the UFO data, indeed I would be the

first to stand up and say so if given the opportunity. However, I

think my approach to the investigation and evaluation of UFO

reports differs considerably to your own, as illustrated in your

FSR article, and this is my primary reason for writing to you.


"What I found disturbing about your article in FSR was your

unquestioning acceptance that every UFO report you discovered

represented 'real' (or 'paranormal') UFOs. This cannot be so,

and I must ask you to reconsider your position carefully."

After discussing the Cornishmen's hoax at Cheesefoot Head in 1986

and the Westbury 1983 hoax I stated:

"I was disappointed to read in your article that it was a 'sad,

sad fact' that the 'Tornado & Storm Theory just won't stand up'.

Apart from not knowing the name of the theory (the vortex

theory), or describing it in any detail so that your readers

could judge the theory for themselves, I wonder why you

deliberately ignored the eye witness accounts of stationary

vortices creating circles. Terence cites two in his Journal of

Meteorology (the Melvyn Bell report and Arthur Shuttlewood's

report), I remember that last year a correspondent wrote to the

'Daily Telegraph' and described their observation of a vortex

bouncing across a field close to their home in the Malvern Hills

[actually at Ross-on-Wye in Herefordshire, PF] creating two


As you can see, I already feared the worst ! Sadly, Andrews

failed to respond to this letter, perhaps fearing a prolonged

argument, so on March 7th 1988 I wrote again, enclosing a copy of

the BUFORA/TORRO Survey Report into the Incidence of

Geometrically Shaped Crop Damage. In my brief covering note I

stated "As you know, I am currently writing several articles

summarising BUFORA's involvement and research into the phenomenon

and I intend sending the report to interested scientific bodies

in the very near future. For this reason I would appreciate some

response to my letter of February 9th and the issues I raised".

Andrews replied by return of post. This letter (dated 9th March

1988) stated: "Dear Paul, thank you for the TORRO/BUFORA survey

document. I will study the contents in the next day or so.

"It is not my intention to comment in the contents of your letter

of 9th February. "I am receiving more reports of similar ground

markings from other countries, hitherto not known. I have two new

sites in this country and a superb eye witness report of a

clockwise circle forming within a few meters (sic) of a Person

(sic) out for a walk with a dog. "It has been a very busy

winter, we await summer with baited breath. Once again, thanks

for my copy, I do appreciate it.

Yours Sincerely "

This is the first proof that Colin Andrews knew of eye witness

testimony and proven hoaxes before he wrote "Circular Evidence"

in 1988. My response, dated 17th March 1988, read as follows:-

"Dear Colin, thank you for your letter of March 9th. I am sorry

you feel unable to deal with any of the points I raised in my

letter to you. Quite apart from the time it took to write my

letter I would have thought it was in everyone's interests for

yourself and Pat [Delgado] to deal with our difference of opinion

in a mature and responsible manner rather than to disregard

eachother's viewpoints and research in this way.

"I am particularly concerned about your personal interpretation

of the circles phenomenon because I have been a member of BUFORA

for over ten years now and I have seen what happens to other

UFOlogists when they make quite sensational claims about our

data. I cannot understand your support of a UFO link with the

circles when so many of our reports turn out to be simple

misidentifications and when such a low proportion of circles have

associated (and perfectly explicable) UFO sightings. Do you not

consider that you have a duty to UFOlogy to present our subject

in its very best light, and that by ignoring all the evidence I

have presented to you in my letter you are not running a very

great risk of discrediting our subject altogether ?

"Returning to your FSR article, I was sorry to see that you

claimed that I said that 'No UFO sightings have ever been made in

connection with the Goodworth Clatford site'. I certainly don't

remember saying this because I knew of the 1985 sighting by a Mrs

Jones in Stockbridge (it is afterall described in 'Mystery of the

Circles' as a misidentification of Venus). "Furthermore, I was

surprised that Gordon Creighton should consider Archie Roy's

withdrawal from circles research to be ominous. I interpret his

action as resulting from his realisation that natural vortices

were fully capable of producing such effects and that established

scientists had been investigating the phenomenon with this in

mind. His action only serves to emphasise how the scientific

community reacts to sensational claims by the UFO movement

(thereby resulting in a dismissal of all our data).

"I hope you were open minded enough to watch Q.E.D. on TV this

week. Again this showed some of the remarkably stable vortices

which can be created by topography (and aircraft !) and how

whirlwinds often remain motionless and operate in pairs. I have

this week obtained Corliss' 'Tornadoes, Dark Days and Anomalous

Precipitation' - it has some very interesting reports which

Terence has not sent me, for example waterspouts with double

walls and whirlwind with double sheaths. Furthermore there are

many accounts of natural phenomena (eg clouds) which were

precisely defined. Clearly we have much to learn about a whole

range of anomalous (but obviously) meteorological phenomena.

"As I pointed out in my last letter to you, I am currently

writing up all my circles involvement over the past 3 years for

the UFO literature. I have sought the views of my colleagues on

the National Investigations Committee (some of whom have been

investigating UFO reports for far longer than I have) and they

are unanimous that I should continue to put over our view that

the postulated UFO link with the circles is, at its very best,

quite dubious. For this reason I again invite you to comment in

detail on my previous letter to you, Yours etc" Well, I suppose

I was just asking for trouble really, for Colin Andrews has NEVER

explained to me why he refused to answer the issues raised in

these letters. He has NEVER justified why his series of best

selling books make no mention of the eye witness testimony

mentioned in my letter of 9th February 1988. Perhaps more

damaging was the article in Flying Saucer Review Vol 31 No 1

(remember them Colin ?), which was published in March 1989, just

before "Circular Evidence" was unleashed on the world. This

article, which discussed rumours about the A.P.E.N. hoax,

constituted an actionable breach of confidence by Andrews and was

written by an anonymous "John Squareman". It stated:

"It has recently been learnt that, in a letter addressed to Mr

Colin Andrews on February 9th 1988, by a Mr Paul Fuller of

Romsey, Hampshire, widely known [eh ???] as Britain's second-most

important and second-most prominent expert on the UFO Problem

[I'm flattered Gordon], Mr Fuller has indicated that he has

secured the 'Scoop of the Century'. .."

This disgraceful article is a second proof that Colin Andrews

received my letter of 9th February 1988 and, in addition, it is

proof that he read my letter to the very end. So, why did these

eye witness accounts and the 1983 Westbury hoax not appear in

Andrews' allegedly "definitive" book that he wrote during 1990

with Pat Delgado ?

>From these documented facts we can conclude that :-

(1) Yes, Andrews fully knew that there were alleged eye witnesses

to circle-forming events more than a year before "Circular

Evidence" was published. He even admits to independently

uncovering an eye witness account that has NEVER appeared in his

public promotion of the subject. Why not ? We invite Andrews to


(2) Yes, Andrews also knew about the 1983 Westbury hoax by the

'Daily Mirror'. This too has NEVER appeared in his public

promotion of the subject. Indeed Colin Andrews went out of his

way to DISMISS hoaxing as a possible cause for the phenomenon in

numerous media interviews.

This deeply embarrassing evidence proves that Andrews must have

temporarily forgotten about the contents of my letter of 9th

February 1988 when he was interviewed on the "Gloria Hunniford"

show on 3rd August 1989. We discussed this episode in "Crop

Circles, A Mystery Solved" (page 79):-

Randles: ...[one of the] real reasons why we believe that

[circles are being formed by natural forces is] because there are

EYE WITNESS ACCOUNTS - which [Andrews and Delgado] studiously

avoid mentioning in their book - of people who have actually SEEN

circles being formed in daylight by wind vortexes [sic]

Hunniford: Let me stop you there, Jenny. Now what about this

point, Colin ? Andrews: There are so many, aren't there ? I

mean the lady just doesn't... Hunniford (interrupting): Well,

let's take that eyewitness report and the weather aspect.

Andrews: Yes, indeed, there's ONE eyewitness report.

Randles (interrupting): There's more than one, MANY more than

one. Forced to discuss this most unwelcome evidence Andrews went

on to state that "... I must say, Gloria, this is very important,

the only one ... isn't it a strange coincidence ? ... [was] an

employee of Dr Meaden's. We're not prepared to accept one

eyewitness account". Andrews has never publicly withdrawn this

inference or corrected this error. Now that the crop circle

circus is over we think its high time Colin Andrews publicly

apologised to everyone who has bought his allegedly "definitive"

book "Circular Evidence". Andrews must apologise for knowingly

omitting proof of crop circle hoaxing, for knowingly omitting

proof of multiple eye witness testimony, and for slandering

people who merely report seeing events which appear to contradict

Andrew's previously stated support for an exotic UFO-related

explanation. It seems that some UFO researchers never learn. By

suppressing evidence which we can prove Andrews was aware of

Andrews helped to spawn an international fraud which now involves

many dozens of hoaxers all over the world. We think its time

Andrews apologised.

SIGAP - Isn't it time you owned up ?

Readers of BUFORA's 1989 report "Controversy of the Circles" will

recall our controversial analysis of the Mrs Jones case from 1985

(described on pages 57-58). Briefly, according to SIGAP's version

of the story, Mrs Jones reported seeing a large central light

surrounded by four satellite lights from her home near

Stockbridge in Hampshire. According to the SIGAP team this

allegedly coincided with the discovery of a quintuplet formation

just a mile or two away.

Sadly our suggestion that 94 year-old Mrs Jones had merely seen

the planet Jupiter shining brightly through broken cloud cover

didn't go down too well with certain UFO groups. I know this

because in 1987 I had been threatened with an action for slander

by three of Flying Saucer Review's su-pporters for daring to

question the standard of investigation into this relatively

innocuous case. This was not to be the only time that Jenny and I

would discover how the "dark gods" at FSR would respond to our

attempts to find reasonable explanations for crop circle events.

Shortly after publication of "Controversy" Mrs Jones' daughter

contacted me to correct errors of fact in the account the SIGAP

team were publishing. The most important error was SIGAP's claim

that the "UFO" had resembled five stationary lights in the form

of a quintuplet formation. In fact she had observed a mass of

SWIRLING lights, so why did SIGAP report stationary lights formed

into a quin-tuplet shape ? Of course this is yet another early

crop circle case which Doug and Dave lay claim to having created,

so any UFO-related explanation seems desperate in the extreme.

Like so many other UFO cases something perfectly identifiable

was mis-represented (presumably by accident) and turned into

something far more exciting. Now SIGAP, isn't it time you owned

up and apologised to the international UFO community ?

(SIGAP = The Surrey Investigation Group into Aerial Phenomena)

Gloucestershire Earth Mysteries has just published an interesting

letter from Pat Delgado. Thanks to Danny Sullivan and Jo-Anne

Wilder for allowing me to reproduce his letter in full:- "This

is to give a light resume of part of the overall crop circle and

other associated situations as I see it in January 1993.

It is because so many phenomena are inter-related that it is

impossible to isolate and pursue just one, progress made along

any one avenue of thought automatically opens doors on either

side. Through any of these doors are further similar networks and

so on ad infinitum, hence the chaotic universe.

There have been a great many changes in time that has passed,

changes in people, attitudes and events, some inevitable others

significant in their own right. During the autumn of last year I

could foresee the pattern of events and situations that were to

take place this year. Consequently I decided to observe from the

side lines and to become involved with visits to crop circle

sites on a limited basis, even so, I met many old friends and

made many new ones.

There is no doubt that the hoaxing element has created some

confusion, but it is amazing such a high percentage of people see

that as the natural progression of humanity. Beneath the

maelstrom of manual replication and the insincerity it brought

with it, the true simple crop circle phenomenon continues as

serenely as ever as it probably has done for thousands of years.

Not only have we seen the evolution of crop circles keep pace

with the expectations of ascending interest but parallel with

this and because of it, has been the expansion of the human minds

in many directions. This is a minor miracle in itself because it

has elevated many thousands of people's thinking capacity to

heights unattainable by usual mundane standards.

Regardless of how crop circles are created, the proof is

everywhere that they touched a nerve that caused a world-wide

explosion of curiosity and lateral thinking unequalled in

modern times. The latent and enormous desire for people wanting

to unit and communicate about subjects orthodox science cannot

explain has been made blatantly obvious. Because the door to the

hitherto unexplained has been flung wide open, it can also be

said that some religious, political and security factions are not

without some concern as it may be seen that a certain amount of

'control' may be at risk.

Some crop circle groups have petered out, possibly through the

inability to see beyond crop circles or not recognising the

mandatory requirement to embrace a wider scope of mysteries that

run parallel to the original subject. I am sure that at whatever

level people are aware of crop circles their minds have benefited

to some degree of positive expansion. Again this year many

people have experienced the continuance of inexplicable sights

and sounds, both in and away from crop circles. My analysis shows

that mysterious phenomena can occur almost anywhere at any

time. It would be true to say that certain categories of

phenomena are associated with certain localities and this may be

related to expectancy. Photography also continues to reveal

anomalies that defy the experts and specialists. There are

individual prints of crop circles developed from an otherwise

perfect roll which have all-over hues or bands or blobs of red or

blue. Other photos have captured mysterious objects in the sky or

at ground level. Tape recorders are continuing to record a

variety of strange sounds in and out of doors.

It is not uncommon at the beginning of each year to wonder what

the future holds and the crop circle subject is at the forefront

of many people's minds. Of course we can only wait and see

despite the attraction of speculation. Whatever occurs we should

accept it with an open mind and realise we are witnessing, not

only the evolution of this particular subject, but the evolution

of mankind and all of its confusing facets.

It is a wonderful thing to communicate in this way through this

publication [GEM], it provides the opportunity to progress

together in seeking a broader awareness and the truth." Pat


So, if I read these musing correctly, Pat Delgado now accepts

that crop circles have been around for "thousands of years" and

(presumably) he too accepts that there must be a natural solution

for the non-hoaxed formations. As for the rest of this letter, if

any readers have the slightest clue what this Delgado is talking

about I'd love to know. Please write to the Editorial address on

page 2 so that we can enlighten everyone. Our thanks to GEM for

allowing us to reproduce this letter.

Also in GEM 15 there is the following letter from BUFORA's Doug

Cooper:- Berry Pomeroy Hoax Exposed

"I have reason to doubt the authenticity of the crop circle

formations at Berry Pomeroy, South Devon last year. My reasons

are based purely on my findings, having researched the events

surrounding these formations and a certain gentleman called Peter

Glastonbury (PG). During last summer, starting in June, a number

of formations of laid crop were found at Berry Pomeroy by PG. PG

lives or rather did live at a place known as True Street House

which is adjacent to the field where all the formations were

found. The first formation (a dumb-bell) cam to my notice via a

local TV report (8th July). During this report a discussion took

place between a reporter and PG who stated that at the time of

the dumb-bell's formation three motorcycle accidents had taken

place and in each case the rider had been killed. He also stated

that two hay barns had caught fire within the area at the same

time !

I contacted PG that evening and visited Berry Pomeroy on July

13th. On arrival PG escorted us to the formation and told us

about the three accidents and the barn fires. On inspecting the

dumb-bell I was not impressed and it was my impression that the

formation was man-made. Whilst at Berry Pomeroy PG informed me of

another dumb-bell he had found at a place called Guzzledown, near

Broxham. Again on visiting the site I got the impression it was

man-made. Some two weeks later this formation was mysteriously

visited and the letters FT were added to the top of the circle.

What FT meant is anybody's guess, but in view of later events,

i.e. an article that appeared in Fortean Times, October 1992, I

assume there has to be some connection !

During the next few weeks a number of other circles/formations

were found at Berry Pomeroy, all by PG. There was even one found

in a field that I had suggested to PG would make a good site -

I'll say no more than that !

Because of the extraordinary claims made by PG, i.e. the

accidents and the fires, I wrote to all the local Police, Fire

and Ambulance services seeking confirmation. Needless to say, I

did not receive any confirmation from these agencies and have to

conclude the whole story was a fabrication by PG.

There is also the case of the so-called mysterious photograph

depicting a 'bright star-like formation' over the first dumb-

bell. This photo was published in Fortean Times, October 1992,

with a report from PG concerning the accidents. In August 1992 I

was informed by PG that he had been involved in the production of

a similar 'star formation' on the front cover of Kindred Spirit

magazine. Some time later during a telephone call PG told me he

knew how to produce the type of effect seen on the photograph,

simply by double exposure and light enhancement. I then of course

asked him if he had faked the photograph, but sadly he still

insisted that it was genuine."

Once again it seems clear that UFO hoaxers already know what kind

of "effects" UFOs are supposed to leave behind - in this case

some kind of residual energy field. This same motif crops up

(sorry) in most of the popular crop circle books (it even crops

up in our own book, but that's a closely guarded secret).

Taylor's photographs of "two black-ribbon darts" (described on

page 98 of "Circular Evidence") demonstrates that Taylor also

knew what UFOs are supposed to be capable of doing.

Regular readers will know that in addition to Fortean Times'

promotion of Glastonbury's photograph The Cerealogist also

promoted this hoax on page 9 of its Winter 1992 issue. I suppose

this just goes to show that in anomaly research nothing has been

learnt from the lessons of history. I gather too that John

Michell was none-too-pleased at the suggestion in GEM that

whoever created the Barbury Castle formation did so as some kind

of "wind up" aimed at himself. This is something which one or two

other researchers (not connected with CERES) have also suggested

to me. Now what kind of so-and-so would do something like that ?

A sociologist perhaps ?

If you want to know what's going on crop-circle wise in

Gloucestershire I suggest you obtain a copy of GEM as Danny and

Jo-Anne are both on the boil. See the address on page 36.

Ted Phillips' Physical Trace Catalogue

Part 1

I am very grateful to Mark Rodeghier of the J. Allen-Hynek Centre

for UFO Studies (CUFOS) for allowing me to reproduce the

following cases from Ted Phillips' celebrated Physical Trace

Catalogue. The catalogue was published in 1975 by CUFOS and its

proper title is "Physical Traces Associated with UFO Sightings, A

Preliminary Catalogue".

Ted Phillips was born in 1942 and has lived all his life in

Missouri. He is still alive today and his career in UFO research

stretched from the late 1960s to the mid 1980s. Phillips had a

varied career and at various times was an inspector for the

Missouri State Highway Department, a professional photographer

and also an amateur jazz musician. According to Ronald Story's

'UFO Encyclopedia' Phillips investigated more than five hundred

UFO cases in his first twelve years of UFO research. His

position statement (written in the mid 1970s) concluded "I

believe, after thirteen years of investigation, [that] the data

indicates a non terrestrial origin."

This summary is based on only a partial listing of the catalogue

as many of Phillips' cases appear extremely dubious in nature.

Cases from the early 1950s are particularly unreliable because

many of the early UFO books were written by people who

automatically assumed that they were describing encounters with

alien spaceships. Jenny Randles tells me that cases reported in

the "hysterical" Spanish and South American media should be

treated even more skeptically because these cases were often

complete fabrications ! Furthermore many of the early cases have

no proper source, eg Phillips quotes Vallee describing cases

which appear to have been anecdotally reported to Vallee. This

means that we often have no idea whether or not a specific case

was investigated by anyone let alone whether it was a

contemporary investigation or whether the investigator was in any

sense someone capable of undertaking an objective scientific


In addition to these problems we have a major definitional

problem concerning cases which feature circular ground traces

because of the current confusion which exists over the

authenticity of the archetypal crop circle. Doug and Dave claim

to have actually created the phenomenon of a sharply-defined

swirled circle, but they apparently based their hoax on the Tully

reeds circles, which themselves were sharply-defined swirled

circles. Given this regrettable fact what do we include in our

definition of a crop circle ? Do we include roughly circular

shapes of depressed but not swirled circles or do we stick to

sharp-edged circles ? How about burned circles or circles where

the crop has been denuded or completely removed ? Given these

problems its probably wise to merely highlight all cases

involving circular traces but not assume that they are

necessarily caused by the same causal mechanism. It is quite

possible that there may be several natural circle-forming

mechanisms which all create different types of circular ground

trace. One of these mechanisms could still be Meaden's postulated

plasma-vortex but it is wise not to assume that any particular

category of circular ground trace must be caused by the

postulated plasma vortex. In any event we will be trying to track

down case material referred to by Phillips and will report back

in a later issue.

Cases are listed in date order and each case has a unique case

number, the location, a brief summary and (usually) a primary

source. Some have local times noted. CUFOS only have one copy

of this catalogue left so please do not write to CUFOS requesting

copies of this case material. CUFOS can be contacted at the J.

Allen Hynek Center for UFO Studies, 2457 West Peterson Avenue,

Chicago, IL 60659, U.S.A.

Case 013: June 12th 1790 FRANCE, Alencon

Time 05.00

Several farmers caught sight of a large globe which was

surrounded by flames. A whistling sound was heard. The object

slowed, made some oscillations and moved toward the top of the

hill, unearthing plants along the slope. The heat was so intense

that grass and small trees started burning. In the evening the

sphere was still warm. Witnesses: 2 mayors, a doctor, 3 other

authorities, in addition to the dozens of peasants who were

present. A kind of door opened and a person came out of it. The

person was dressed in a strange way, wearing a tight-fitting suit

and, seeing all the people, said some words that were not

understood and ran into the woods. The sphere exploded

silently, throwing pieces everywhere, and these pieces burned

until they were powder. This report [is based on an earlier

report made] on June 17, 1790, by Police Inspector Liabeuf.

Source: Vallee III, p60. [PF Notes: This case has always

attracted more than the usual amount of skepticism, although we

are not aware that it has been exposed as a hoax. Quite a few of

Vallee's original folklore cases were later exposed as dubious or

hoaxed, but this case sounds like something straight out of Jules

Verne - perhaps we have a retrospective hoax ? Also, were there

really Police Inspectors in 18th century France ? I thought

Peel didn't found the first police force in Britain until the

1830s so how can we have a French Police Inspector in 1790 ?]

Case 683: 1842 U.S.S.R., Orenburg

"Small metal objects, perfectly hexagonal, fell out of the sky

after a 'strange cloud' was seen hanging over the town for a

considerable time" (UFOs from Behind the Iron Curtain, page 278).

[PF Another weird case ! Sounds a little bit like the infamous

First Fourth Norfolk Regiment that allegedly disappeared inside a

strange cloud during the siege of Gallipoli in 1916. This too was

a retrospective hoax that has only recently been admitted to.

On the other hand Charles Fort's books were full of 'strange

clouds' that did peculiar things. Its a pity there isn't more

information. Difficult to evaluate.]

Case 006: Date Unknown. U.S.A., Silver City, NC.

The mystery circle, as it is called locally, has not for many

years produced plant growth. Transplanted grass has died. It is

said that insects, birds and animals avoid the area, which is a

40-ft circle. (Skylook)

[PF This doesn't sound like a crop circle at all.]

Case 007: Date Unknown. U.S.A.

A Mrs Fulton saw an occupant with a large head as he sat down on

the rim of a round object. The object suddenly glowed and gave

out rays of yellow light. The bottom revolved anti-clockwise and

the object rose vertically at a high speed. It left the smell of

hot pepper in the air. Three weeks later every tree in the

orchard was dead. (Personal files) [PF Another entity case which

sounds very much like a hoax. If there were physical traces - as

alleged - why has this case not been published elsewhere in the

literature as a classic CEII/CEIII ?]

Case 008: Date Unknown. U.S.A. Darrington, WA.

UFO landed, bark on tree trunks damaged, trees spread outward. No

other details. (UFO-INFO).

[PF Not enough detail to comment on really]

Case 014: December 7th 1872. ENGLAND, Banbury. Time: 10.00 At

King's Sutton an object resembling a haystack flew on an

irregular course. Sometimes high, sometimes low, it was

accompanied by fire and dense smoke, and produced the same effect

as a tornado, felling trees and walls. It vanished suddenly.

(VALLEE III) [PF This sounds like a haystack caught in a vortex


Case 015: July 1880. CANADA, East Kent, Ontario.

David Muckle and W.R. McKay heard a sudden loud report. They

turned to see a cloud of stones flying upward from a spot in a

field. They examined the spot, which was circular and about 16

ft. across. There was no sign of an eruption nor anything to

indicate the fall of a heavy body there. The ground was simply

swept clean. (Scientific American, July 10, 1880). [PF This is

the classic case discussed in all our work as an early account of

a sudden explosive vortex creating a circular ground trace. It is

listed along with other accounts of explosive vortex events in

Corliss' "Tornados, Dark Days and Anomalous Precipitation"]

Case 040: September 27, 1950. U.S.A. Philadelphia, PA.

Police officers John Collins and Joseph Kennan saw an object 6

ft. in diameter float to earth in an open field. They approached

the object with flashlights. Collins tried to pick the object up,

the part touched by his hand dissolved leaving a stick, odourless

residue. Within a half hour the entire object had evaporated. A

spot remained at the site. (News slips). [PF This sounds to me

more like some kind of industrial pollutant rather than a

spaceship ! Jenny Randles has informed me of some fascinating

work by Louis Frank (summarised in a paper by Frank, Sigworth and

Craven, International Geophysical Research Letters, 1986). Frank

was intrigued by abnormally high water vapour levels in the upper

atmosphere as well as by UFO reports and reports of strange

things falling out of the sky. He postulated that every day the

earth's atmosphere is struck by thousands of mini comets - comets

composed of inter-stellar ice but only a few metres in size. Such

comets would presumably evaporate in the upper atmosphere, where

they might be mistaken for UFOs. A few might conceivably reach

the lower atmosphere where they might behave in the manner

described in this case. Frank's controversial theory has been

widely debated in the scientific press and has attracted a good

deal of skepticism. I've not heard of Frank's theory before so

perhaps it is wise to reserve judgement.]

Case 047: 1952 U.S.A., Lamonte, MO.

Former director of the Sedalia ASCS office was contacted by Joe

Thompson and asked to look at an unusual area on his farm which

had appeared overnight. He found a perfect circle 16 ft. across

with the plants wilted and dead. The soil was examined and no

cause could be found. (Personal files).

[PF Another inconclusive case]

Case 815: June 1952. U.S.A. Little Spring Creek, TN

Marks of legs and center spike in chirt (sic), along with small

heelless footprints. Around 11 p.m. man hears strange sounds and

weird music, sees a shiny thing on the ground, with bright lights

coming through an open door. 4 or 5 men, 4.5 to 5 ft. tall

dancing and singing in high-pitched voices. Object aluminium

coloured, glowing orange and blue in spots, some of which were

too bright to look at directly. Rotating lights on translucent

ball at top. Object on 4 legs, each with a ball at the end, and a

center spike. Stood 3-4 ft. off the ground, 7-8 feet thick at

center, like 2 saucers stuck together. Men reloaded object,

advanced toward witness with things in their hands that looked

like guns, but stopped, apparently unwilling to cross a creek.

men walked up ramp or steps into object, which rose vertically in

a twisting, cork-screw motion, glowing brighter as it rose.

(Stanley L. Ingram "Recent Sightings" page 65 in "Unidentified

Flying Objects Over the Tennessee Valley" by W.A. Darbro and

Ingram, South Publishing Co., Huntsville, Ala. 1974. Via Fred


[PF Well ! This is a classic early close encounter case that

exceeds the boggle threshold by some way. I don't like single

witness entity cases, particularly ones where the entities,

despite having travelled from goodness-knows-where, were

incapable of crossing a creek ? It could so easily turn out to

be a hoax .]

Case 704: July 15th, 1952. GERMANY, Gleimershausen.

Former Mayor Oskar Linke and his 12-year-old stepdaughter saw a

landed circular object and occupants. Witnesses moved to within

30 ft. Object was 50 ft. across with two rows of holes along the

side, each about 1 ft. in diameter. A black cylindrical tower was

seen at the top center; it was about 10 ft. high, went through

the disk and the object was resting on it. Object slowly

ascended, whistling sound was heard. Several people in a nearby

village saw it flying overhead. A circular depression where the

tower had rested was found. (The New York Enquirer. 07-21-52).

[PF. Another awkward case. Its difficult to come to a rational

solution unless we conclude that "it can't be therefore it isn't"


Case 676: August 6th, 1952. U.S.A., Lumberton, NC. Time: 21.00

James J. Allen, 51, saw a round object 8 ft. long, 6 ft. high

land within 10 ft. of him. Small occupant seen. Footprints found.

(The Robesonian, Lumberton, 08-07-52). [PF. Not really enough

information here. ]

Case 052: May 20th, 1953. U.S.A., Brush Creek, CA. Time: 18.30

A miner, John Q. Black, saw a silvery disk, 7 ft. in diameter and

6 ft. thick land on a sandbar within 50 ft. of the witness. He

saw a creature about the size of a midget get out of the craft,

scoop up water in a shiny pail and hand it inside. The witness

and his partner John van Allen saw marks in the sand about 1 ft.

wide that looked like "elephant feet". ("The Humanoids", p. 146)

Case 051: May 30th, 1953. NEW ZEALAND, Christchurch. White

filaments seen coming to ground at time of UFO sighting.


Case 826: June 20th, 1953. U.S.A., Brush Creek, CA. Time: 18.30

Incident identical to that of May 20th, 1953. (Humanoids)

[PF The standard explanation for these "Angel Hair" cases is that

spiders' cobwebs have coalesced and then disintegrated. The only

real question is how the spiders' webs coalesce at cloud level].

Case 053: June 24th, 1953. U.S.A., Hampton Bay, NY. Time: 00.18

Woman saw a round object 100 ft. in diameter. Lighted red band

around the middle, oscillating motion. Noise similar to swarm of

bees. Four portholes seen in top section along with red lights.

Seen for 3 minutes. Two days later a yellowish moss was observed

at the site. Object hovered over water. (VALLEE III).

[PF: I think it was John Keel who first drew attention to the

"swarm of bees" sound frequently heard during close encounter

cases. The trace is not very typical of a CEII and may not even

be related to the object seen.]

Case 054: July 2nd, 1953. SPAIN, Villares des Saz. Time: 13.00

Maximo Munes Olivares, 14, saw a "big balloon" on the ground

when a faint whistling sound attracted his attention. It was

metallic. Three dwarfs emerged, they were dressed in blue. they

re-entered the object, which glowed very brightly, made a soft

whistling sound and went off "like a rocket". Footprints and

four holes 2 in. deep forming a perfect square of 14 in. were

found by police. (VALLEE III)

[PF. Another single witness entity case. Don't forget Jenny's

comments about a "hysterical" Spanish UFO press. The traces -

even the case itself - may have been fabricated by the witness or

the newspaper.]

Case 055: August 17th, 1953. MEXICO, Ciudad Valles. Time: 18.00

Salvidor Villanueva, 40, noted failure in his auto engine. As he

tried to make repairs he was approached by two men, 4 ft. tall

wearing gray coveralls and carrying helmets. An object 40 ft.

across, disc-shaped with a dome and humming sound was seen. It

ascended vertically at high speed. Bushes and sticks were found

broken at the site. This formed a circle 40 to 45 ft. across.

(FSR 1-70)

[PF Sounds more like a hoax to me !]

Case 056: August 18th, 1953. U.S.A., Ashboro, NC.

Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Dixon found a perfect 18 ft. circle in their

front yard. The circle had a substance that appeared to be some

kind of powder and had a burned odour, although it did not kill

or scorch the grass. (George Fawcett)

[Again not very convincing evidence of a crop circle]

Case 057: September 4th, 1953. FRANCE, Tennerre. Time: 21.30 A

woman saw two objects on the ground and 3-5 ft. tall men running

towards the object. They had large heads and wore helmets and

boots. One entered the elongated object which was 18 ft. wide. It

took a vertical position resting on a tripod and took off with a

spherical object into which the other two creatures had gone.

Traces were found. (Vallee III). Case 059: November, 1953.

NORWAY, Gjersjoen Bridge.

Mr. Tygve, Mrs. Buflot and a neighbour saw an object rose from

behind a hill and follow their car, stopping ahead of them just

above the ground. They stopped, and felt "pricklings" until the

craft took off vertically. A watch stopped working, and numerous

people vouch for the fact that the paint on the car changed from

beige to dark green. (Vallee III). [This sounds a promising case.

The "pricklings" may well be due to the presence of static

electricity. There are numerous cases on record where the UFO

followed a vehicle - this could be because the car was

electrically charged by the proximity of a natural electro-

magnetic field. There are also plenty of cases where car bodies

apparently changed colour, although it is not really clear if

this was just a temporary illusion (eg at night) or a real effect

witnessed in daylight. We'll try and find out more details (Clas

do you know anything ?)].

Case 061: December, 1953. CANADA, Sherbrook, NS.

Witness saw two "indescribable" shadows, a while later a large

round object took off some 350 ft. away with a blue-green light.

Police found broken bushes as evidence of an enormous weight.

Animals reacted. (Vallee III)

Case 062: 1954. MEXICO. A flying object was witnessed by many

citizens. It was watched by all at a distance of less than 50 ft.

until it finally left, leaving behind a circle of flattened corn.

To date nothing grows in the circle. (Data-Net)

[PF At last, something which sounds like a crop circle ! We will

be trying to find more information on this case for a future

issue. The lack of a precise date and location is not very

encouraging. It could be the "1953" case we published in our

historical list in CW14] Case 063: 1954, CANADA, Vivian.

Circular area devoid of plant growth to date (1971).

(H.H. McKay)

[PF Again this doesn't sound like crop circles as we have come to

know and love them .] Case 662: January 4th, 1954. FRANCE,

Marignane Airport. Time: 21.00 Witness saw a round object

landing, trace found. (MUFOB)

Case 663: February 1954. U.S.A., San Bernardino, CA. Time: 19.00

Engineer A.P. Wheeler driving when he saw a metallic object

resting on the road ahead. He stopped 10m from it. The object

was a disk on which a hatch was seen. Object ascended disturbing

gravel below. Object disappeared in 30 seconds. (MUFOB)

Case 789: May 20th, 1954 ENGLAND, Bruton, Somerset. Time: 02.00

Nigel Frapple, cycling home from a dance, saw first a terrific

light in a field and then a huge circular metallic object, 50

ft. across, with a brilliant flame-coloured light coming from a

central cockpit, hovering 20 ft. above the ground about 80-100

ft. away. After a minute it moved off towards the northwest,

climbing and increasing speed. There was a slight swishing sound

heard. The same sort of object was seen near Ringwood in

Hampshire the same night. The next day Mr. Frapple and a reporter

examined the field and found "grass pushed flat in an area 100

ft. in diameter, and scorched in places". (The Humanoids)

[PF This is one of the early classic crop circle cases, often

referred to as the Redlynch case. Like many of the earlier case

the trace was in grass, thus disqualifying it as a crop circle

according to some researchers]

Case 065: June 21st, 1954. CANADA, Ridgeway, Ontario. Time:

01.00 Mr. & Mrs. Guy Baker reported a round object some 50 ft.

in diameter. They reported a dome and multi-coloured lights. The

Baker car would not start during the observation. There was a

large, brown circular area where the object was seen. (VALLEE

III) [PF. Again, probably not a crop circle, but interesting

nevertheless.] Case 097: December 12th, 1954. BRAZIL, Campinas.

A lady observed three UFOs, dull gray, emitting a strong light as

they dived low over her house. A liquid substance dropped from

one, like a silver rain. She ran to the spot where it had fallen

and found a brilliant glowing stain, spread over the cement near

the washing tank. The stain was quite hot. The material was

analysed by Chief Chemist, Dr. Visvaldo Maffei, Young

Laboratories, 584 Francisco Deodoro Street, Campinas. "The sample

analysed is a combination of chemically pure tin-88.91 % and

oxygen-11.09 %." (FSR) [This is another peculiar case which

sounds potentially explicable. We'll get back to you on this one


Case 098: December 19th, 1954. VENEZUELA, Valencia.

Jose Parra, an 18-year-old jockey was training when he saw six

small men loading rocks into a disc hovering near the ground. He

tried to run but a violet-coloured beam from a device held by

one of the men stopped him. Footprints were found. (FSR)

Case 099: December 29th, 1954. FRANCE, Bru. Time: 21.00

A Mr. Gamba saw an oval red object 175 ft. away. When he tried

to approach it, he found he was unable to move. As soon as this

"paralysis" subsided, he ran to get his brothers and came back to

the object, which turned white, then red. It rose and flew away

toward the east. It had been on the ground at least 15 minutes.

Traces were found, as if the ground had been dug up. Small trees

near the river were found damaged, as if they had been cut with a

knife. (VALEE III)

Case 101: 1955, U.S.A., Elking, AK.

Frank Huson reported the following incident which took place on

his farm. After a heavy rain, 'I walked up to an almost perfect

circle, which was formed by the peculiar disposition of the dead

weeds that had been uprooted. Inside this circle, no weeds stood

at all. The uprooted weeds, where they were thick, were lying

along the outer rim of the circle, against the weeds that were

still standing, as if they had been pulled up, and moved by some

force. The ground was soft, and there were no marks showing that

anything had sat down there. This circle was about 25 ft. across.

(Lucius Farish)

[PF. Well, what an intriguing case. What a pity it only involves

weeds rather than mature vegetation. It would be very easy to

read too much into this case so again we will try to find out

more before coming to a conclusion.]

Case 790: March 30th, 1955. U.S.A., near Tuscon, AZ. Time:

03.15 Andy Florio, a musician, was driving from Tuscon to El

Paso on Highway 80 when he saw a "disc-machine "... at least 100

ft. in diameter, 25 ft. thick, dirty gold or bronze with circular

openings around its rim from which amber-coloured lights

protruded. Bluish-green lights were "shining and flickering

upward" from its roof. "It made the sound of electrical humming

with stronger and softer volume. It yawed, swayed back and forth

and turned over on its axis once as I stood out of my car on the

driver's side ... It tipped over on its side and shot a

brilliant, blinding white-coloured beam of light at me,

bubbling the dome of the paint on the car as well as burning my

elbow." Mr. Florio felt a needle-like tingling sensation and heat

all over his body and nausea a few weeks later. The radio

stopped, lights dimmed and the motor chugged at a speed of 12-15

miles an hour "as though it might stall any second." When he

arrived at a garage in El Paso the next afternoon, "half the acid

was gone from the battery, I was running on three plugs, and my

radio was burned out completely." (Modern People, Oct. 27, 1974

and personal communication to CUFOS)

[This is a good CEII report with valuable clues about the nature

of the natural energy forces involved. Again note the reference

to a "tingling" sensation and the affect on the car bodywork. We

will be searching for more information about this case and will

report back on what we find.]

Case 521: July 22nd, 1955. U.S.A., Cincinnati, OH. Time: 17.30

Mr E.M. had been mowing his lawn and kneeled down near a peach

tree, when suddenly "a peculiar liquid substance dark red in

colour began pelting me and the tree". He looked up and saw a

pear-shaped object about 1000 ft. high moving slowly from west to

east. As he watched, his hands and arms began to burn painfully,

but washing them immediately eased the pain. When Mr. M. went

out and examined the peach tree the next day, he found that most

of the leaves had turned brown and fallen, the twigs and limbs

were brittle, the peaches seemed "petrified" and the trunk had

turned so hard that a nail could be driven in only with great

difficulty. The grass below the tree had also died. (C.R.I.F.O.

Orbit, Sep 2, 1955)

Case 105: August 6th, 1955. U.S.A., Bedford, Indiana.

Semicircular imprints. (NICAP) Case 251: October 1955.

AUSTRALIA, Port Augusta; Case 107: October 2nd, 1955. U.S.A.,

Uhrichsville, OH; Case 108: October 10th, 1955. U.S.A.,

Cincinnati, OH and Case 109: October 27, 1955. U.S.A.,

Cincinnati, OH. All listed as

White filaments seen falling to ground at time of UFO sighting.

(Stringfield) [More "Angel Hair" spiders' cobwebs]

Case 111: 1956. FRANCE. Circular trace found.

Case 110: 1956, U.S.A., Stover, MO.

A bright light was seen ascending from a wooded area. When

neighbours investigated, they found the ground blackened in a

circular area 56 ft. across. Several small trees were broken and

pushed outward from the blackened area. In 1968 a bright light

was seen again in the same place. (Personal files)

Case 706: Summer, 1956. U.S.A., Nellis Air Force Base, NV. Gear

marks in triangular pattern, individual impressions similar to

Case 247. 100 ft. diameter domed disk with three circular landing

gear. Car stopped. (Lorenzen, Coral and Jim, "Flying Saucer

Occupants" Signet, New American Library, N.Y., 1967, page 29.

Via Fred Merritt) Case 112: Fall, 1956. U.S.A., Bethel, CT.

Danti Vaghi and a friend found a circle of grass 18 ft. in

diameter in a field just off Federal Road C. In the center, a 3

ft. circle of grass stood intact. Around the outside of the

burned area, the grass still contained traces of nickel and

chromium. (Bethel Home News, 11-25-69) [PF Some confusion exists

in the UFO literature over the alleged "burning" inside circles.

This is sometimes wrongly assumed when plants rot and turn

black. It would be interesting to find out who analysed the

grass and found such interesting metals. Were these metals

already present before the circle was formed ? We'll be trying to

track down more information] OK folks. That's enough to keep you

going for the next couple of months ! Now you can appreciate the

sorts of problems UFOlogists have when they investigate close

encounter cases. What would YOU do if a witness claimed that he

saw a spaceship land, disgorge four little entities and then

leave behind a circular trace whilst firing a ray gun at you ?

Fear not, for we UFOlogists are searching for the answers.

Swangate Update

Regular readers will already know about the infamous Swangate

Hoax which has formed the basis of a number of articles in The

Cropwatcher. This hoax has been renamed "Schnabelgate" in some

magazines. It is not my intention to keep on devoting page after

page to this non-event, but nevertheless claims and counter-

claims are still being made as perpetrators and victims attempt

to defend their respective corners. Here's all the latest



The Houston UFO Network's "HUFON Report" (April 1993) has

published the following letter from George Wingfield:- "Bill

Eatwell has mailed me a copy of a letter from Jim Schnabel which

he sent in response to a piece which I supplied for HUFON Report.

There are so many wild allegations and untruths in his letter

that I will not bother to respond to each one separately but I

feel that I must make a few observations.

What was printed in HUFON Report was the transcript of a

telephone conversation which Schnabel had with Armen Victorian,

and its accuracy has never been contested before (though part may

have been omitted since the conversation was incomplete). There

was also a short commentary by me. If Schnabel now claims that

the conversation was a "send up", as I had noted in the published

commentary, he has absolutely no reason for complaint since it

was he who said these things. To bemoan that he was lying to

Victorian, and that every-one should have known that, and simply

accept what he says now is the truth, is really a most curious

complaint ! (It is also, as far as I can see, his only way out of

this most extraordinary mess which he has gotten himself into).

I commented that, in the taped conversation, Schnabel "reveals

his role as a paid government agent" and, whatever the validity

of the tape's content, I would not modify this assessment, though

I have no proof that he belongs to any particular group or

organisation. Throughout 1992, he pursued this objective,

engaging in extensive circlefaking and attempts to mislead and

confuse CCCS and other circles researchers. Andrew Collins, the

respected author writing in Earthquest News (Winter 1992), says

of Irving and Schnabel: 'They have used devious methods and

misinformation to achieve their goals and these have been

questioned on a number of occasions. They have even been accused

of creating hoaxed formations themselves, an accusation they have

never publicly denied, knowing that the screen of controversy

will allow them to increase their disinformation project and

cause further consternation among crop circle believers". Collins

should certainly know since he is a close friend of Irving, or at

least he was last summer.

Whether the infamous tape was itself intended as disinformation -

- a subtle blend of truth and fiction intended to mislead and

confuse -- is obviously open to speculation. In Schnabel's

letter to HUFON Report there are many outright lies [my

emphasis, PF] such as: - (1) the suggestion that I've said

Michael Green "practices black magic" (absurd), (2) Claims that

I have accused all sorts of people of "espionage activity"

against me (ridiculous !), (3) "How can we get Schnabel?" (not

something I ever said to Irving), (4) "that MUFON was part of

some conspiracy" (never!) (5) that "government agents were

following me to crop circle lectures" (preposterous!), (6) etc.,


What I commented on, regarding Schnabel, is there on the tape

and these things were things which he undoubtedly said, whatever

his explanation now. His claims about me are mostly total

fabrication [my emphasis, PF]. As for him being a "journalist for

several years", one must take that with a pinch of salt, since it

is based on a mere handful of articles which he has written for

newspapers. Less than six months ago he used to say that he was

a student doing a Ph.D. course at Bath University, a description

he now seems to have been abandoned [sic]. There is no way that

he earns a living for himself from journalism and, unless he is

a man of some personal wealth [sic]. One might easily wonder who

finances his activities in this country.

Perhaps Mr. Schnabel would like to give, for once, a straight

yes/no answer to the following questions: (1) Was he one of those

involved in making the large elaborate crop formation near

Froxfield (approx. O.S. Ref: SU273683) on the night of August 8/9

? (2) Does he have links with either of the religious groups, Pax

Romana or Opus Del ?

This would provide a useful true/false result for further voice

stress analysis. Sincerely, G.W." B. MUFON UFO JOURNAL

A further round of correspondence has appeared in MUFON UFO

Journal No 298 (February 1993). In it Wingfield accuses Schnabel

and Irving of trying to "suppress a commentary and transcript" of

the Swangate tape that was about to appear in The Circular.

Strange, but I thought it was Michael Green who suppressed this

commentary, not Schnabel (obviously just a minor point George).

Wingfield goes on to repeat his allegation of a secret government

meeting in September 1990 which allegedly decided to "debunk"

crop circles in order to keep the ugly truth from the public. I

am sure that regular readers will agree with me when I state that

to date Wingfield has published not one shred of tangible

documentary evidence to support this claim, despite the fact that

I challenged him to do so in CW9 (January/February 1992). In the

subsequent year Wingfield has continued to accuse anyone who

dares to suggest that numerous crop circles are hoaxes of being a

government agent ! We again challenge Wingfield to publish the

name of the building where this Ministerial meeting allegedly

occurred, the names of those present and the name of his

informer. If necessary I will be happy to undertake a written

confidence. My own enquiries produced denials from two of the

three Departments allegedly involved (the third never answered).

Wingfield goes on to describe his April 1992 lunch with "four

gentlemen from the CIA" and his lecture to the U.S. Department of

Agriculture in Beltsville, MD. This, in Wingfield's view,

confirms the US Government's "interest" in the crop circle

phenomenon. So, not only are there government agents trying to

keep the awful truth from the public but they go and give

themselves away to Chief Spy Hunter George Wingfield over a pizza

!!! Next Wingfield accuses Schnabel, Irving and other un-named

researchers of faking a series of "at least 15 formations,

principally with a view to fooling and discrediting researchers

from the Centre for Crop Circle Studies". Now who on earth would

want to do a low-down trick like that ???

According to Wingfield Schnabel has "already admitted to his

circlefaking on a British TV program". Of course, regular readers

will know that Schnabel did no such thing on the "Equinox"

documentary, but this doesn't seem to have deterred Wingfield

from then alleging that Rob Irving accidentally produced a tape

recording where he admits to having made a formation at Alton

Barnes... "This may be used in evidence when charges of criminal

damage are brought by farmers against them".

Wingfield finishes this series of serious defamatory allegations

by stating that "No one has actually said that [Schnabel] belongs

to the CIA, XYZ, or any other organization, but his curious

behaviour might well make one think so. Since he and Mr. Irving

have offered us little but hoax and deception [my emphasis, PF]

in 1992, it is hard to see his denials and disclaimers in the

Journal article as being different from what he has given us

already." In his response Schnabel denies Wingfield's charge of

being a Catholic, an anti-paranormal zealot and an operative for

the CIA. He also accuses Wingfield of being "disingenuous" [what

a super word Jim] over his accusation that Schnabel and Irving

faked a series of 15 formations. Schnabel denies admitting

(either on tape or the Equinox programme) that he was involved in

circlefaking. This fascinating argument seems set to run and run

for some time ....

C. Info-Paranet Newsletter Vol 1 No 630

This is part of the MUFON bulletin board system which can be

dialled up if you have a modem and a decent PC. Henry Azadedel

has an article entitled "Disinformers, Deceivers and their

Legitimate Supporters" which was published on March 11th 1993 in

response to Schnabel's original MUFON UFO Journal article

"Confessions of a Crop Circle Spy". In this article

Henry/Victorian/Ntumba blames the publication of Schnabel's

article on Walt Andrus (International Director of MUFON) whose

"interference in this instance was the result of a long-standing

difference of opinion that exists between myself and his

management of MUFON." Victorian then alleges that Dennis Stacy,

Editor of the MUFON Journal, faxed a "ridiculous letter" to

Wingfield, but later apologised for being "drunk" when he wrote

it !

Victorian continues his attack against MUFON...

"Equally condemning is the attitude and supportive platform MUFON

provides for self confessed tricksters like Jim Schnabel and

Robert Irving, who boast about what they have done and still do.

Which, in a sense, is very much reminiscent of what OSI did

through Bill Moore, for a decade, to the field.

"It is known by everyone in crop circle research that Irving-

Schnabel's joint covert activities have caused enormous damage to

both the farmers, who are desperately seeking for legal means to

prosecute the two [let's see some proof then. PF], and the crop

circle researchers themselves, whose research has suffered

irreparable damage." [quite !]

Readers will no doubt be shocked to learn that Schnabel had

allegedly misled "leading" cerealogists [who, George ? Henry ?]

by "falsely" claiming to be a student studying sociology at

Lincoln College, Oxford. Having seen copies of some fascinating

correspondence from Michael Green to the Head of Schnabel's

former college at Oxford I can personally vouch for the falsity

of Henry's accusations, but Henry goes on....

"Then Schnabel published the most damning article in the

Independent Magazine in December 1991 about crop circles and

their researchers; and his true quest emerged. It became

immediately clear that Schnabel, by employing outright deceitful

tactics [my emphasis, PF], had fooled everyone about his genuine

intentions" [careful Henry, how do you prove someone's "genuine

intentions" ?]. Schnabel's honourable letter of apology to the

Beckhampton Group for his exposure of the hoaxer "Ron Smithers"

is then published in full to further support Armen Victorian's

actionable allegations:-

"This was the beginning of an intensified campaign of

disinformation by Schnabel and his colleague Robert Irving. In

the following months they published more similar articles [????

PF]. Together with Robert Irving [sic], they donned camouflage

clothing and, with the help of the night, they created utter

havoc in the farmers fields and, thereby, further confusion

amongst the crop circle researchers about the number of hoaxed

formations in existence. Ken Brown, who is currently writing a

book about the Doug and Dave affair, told me that several

meetings had taken place between Schnabel/Irving and Doug and

Dave, the former keen to further his knowledge of how to advance

hoaxing techniques."

Doesn't this too sound like one more "cerealogist" who accepts -

at least in part - Doug and Daves' claim of mass hoaxing ?

Victorian then claims that Jill Freeman, the Editor of the

"Equinox" crop circle documentary, told him that Irving and

Schnabel admitted to making "several" crop circles by "illegally

entering into farm land and causing damage (to) crops". Well,

several High Court Libel Actions later Victorian turns his

attention to Robert Irving. According to Victorian's research

Irving was "allegedly a member of the Second Church of Satan in

the USA, or Friends of Hecarte in England, and his views on black

magic are widely known in England through a number of anonymous

Satanic letters he has written to a number of crop circle

researchers." Victorian goes on to allege that Irving carries a

very large knife with him "at all times" [he didn't the last time

I saw him, PF] and that he admitted to being paid by an un-named


Like George it seems that all of Henry's spies also declare their

membership of shadowy intelligence agencies.

Finally, and this is his coup-de-grace, Victorian publishes a

letter from an un-named American researcher who allegedly

encountered Irving in the Waggon & Horses.. This un-named

researcher states that:-

"Out of curiosity, I started up a conversation about the corn

circles. I wish I hadn't... The guy with the hair (dressed

black) name was Bob (maybe Rob) Irvine (Bob Irving - author). He

was a psychopath. Suzie [his partner, PF] wanted us to leave,

because he was becoming very annoyed with my questions. I am of

the opinion that this guy had something very wrong with him, in a

psychological way. A nutter...

I don't know whether this means anything to you but I would stay

well away from this idiot, he seems dangerous to me. Have you

heard of him ? "

Victorian ends his article by stating that in his telephone

conversations with Schnabel "His use of certain words left no

doubt in my mind about the length and the depth of the problem we

were faced with. Some of the vocabulary he used is used only by

Intelligence officers or their recruits. In the course of over

two decades that I have been engaged as a researcher within

Intelligence, only those who have had an intelligence or related

career used terms such as "Burnt Out" in the context of their

conversations: "Its extremely strenuous work and, you know,

sometimes people become BURNED OUT after only a few years...". He

also alleges that a voice-stress analysis conducted by an

"official government body in the U.S. has proved beyond any

shadow of doubt that he [Schnabel] spoke the truth in his

telephone conversations with me." Unfortunately Victorian doesn't

name the organisation that has apparently carried out this

irreproachable method of proving researcher's links with shadowy

intelligence agencies.

Victorian ends his article with a mighty swipe at Stacy and

Andrus, accusing them of being "punch-drunk editors" and "sleazy

directors" who have betrayed UFOlogy and left "the Schnabels

and Irvings [to] slaughter what is left of the field."

Phew ! We'll keep you informed about this one....

D. UFO Magazine

In vol 11 no 4 of "UFO Magazine" (the official publication of

"Quest International Publications Ltd"), Victorian goes on to

allege that Rosemary Ellen-Guiley of the Centre for North

American Crop Circle Studies (NACCS) is a member of a secret

group of intelligence agents known as the Aviary. The members of

this group are shown in the panel at the top of this page.

Now I presume that the three CIA operatives and David Lemmons

are the four people George Wingfield went out to lunch with on

his trip to Washington D.C. last September. It seems that these

secret undercover agents were foolish enough to declare their

membership of the CIA over a meal !!! Rule 1 for Spies - Never go

out to lunch with George Wingfield.

"UFO magazine" also discusses a claim made by Victorian at the

September 1992 Quest Conference in Leeds (the one when Schnabel

challenged him about his conviction at the Old Bailey for being a

rare orchid smuggler). I am very grateful to the IUN's Allan

Scathes for sending me a transcript of part of Victorian's

lecture at this conference. In it, Victorian plays a tape

recording of a conversation he has with someone who allegedly was

responsible for archiving U.S. Presidential orders. This person

apparently confirms Victorian's suspicion that the MJ-12

documents (about the recovery of an alien spaceship at Roswell,

New Mexico in 1947 by the U.S. Government) were apparently faked

[oh god, how on earth can you go on living ?].

E. The Aquarium Conspiracy

This is another Paranet Bulletin Board article which is doing the

rounds - and its a real scream !!! The authors are Dan Smith and

Rosemary Ellen Guiley, both Directors of the Center for North

American Crop Circle Studies, and they begin with "We stand

accused, according to various rumors that are circulating, of

being key figures in one of the greatest conspiracies ever to hit

the paranormal field. Well, golly, ... shucks, folks...". This

must be the most bizarre item I've seen for some time as both

seem quite happy for these rumours to continue swirling around

("Those who love rumors will continue to believe in them and

spread them, regardless of what we say"). Even more bizarrely,

both turn out to be members of a group of eschatologists -

people studying the end of the world -and their project is "like

a Manhattan Project going on behind the scenes of alien grays

and praying mantises having sex with humans". Well, some people

get all the luck don't they ! It seems that crop circles are just

one part of a great "eschaton event" which is about to hit us...

"The Manhattan Project relative to the eschaton is a global

civilian network of people who will serve as a lightning rod for

the cosmic energies coming in during the consciousness

revolution. They will be looking to channel these energies into

expanded realities. Thus, they will provide a degree of

protection for those people who can find their places alongside

the network. Outside of the network there will be greater levels

of trauma and confusion." . You can say that again ! Turning to

now infamous "Lunch", this is what they have to say: "Now

Wingfield comes along to stir the pot even more, talking about a

CIA lunch we three were at last year, showing in his lectures a

slide of Rosemary seated next to a member of the Aviary. The

implication is that this was the Big Approach to Compromise

George. Sorry, George, it ain't so..."

Apparently "The Lunch" was organised by Dan Smith as part of a

"networking effort". This took place on April 15th, 1992 at a

restaurant in Arlington, Virginia. "Besides ourselves and George,

participants included George's wife, Gloria, three employees of

the CIA and an outside colleague of theirs. None of us knew in

advance what would be discussed. Conversation centred on

eschatology, crop circles, and an explanation of the Aviary given

to George by 'The Pelican'... Afterward, George wondered what it

was all about. The answers are obvious, but they won't be found

in rumours....".

If readers wish to find out more about the "eschaton event",

write to P.O. Box 4766, Lutherville, MD 21094, U.S.A. Don't

forget to take your new reality with you. F. The Circular


Finally, someone has kindly sent me a copy of George Wingfield's

editorial - the one Michael Green chopped from The Circular after

it had been printed. I won't waste any more space on this long-

running farce, but the key statement is in paragraph three: "In

the following candid-interview Schnabel reveals his work as a

paid disinformation agent working for an unnamed western

intelligence organisation."

This directly contradicts Wingfield's statement in his letter to

the MUFON UFO Journal, where he claims that "No one has actually

said that he belongs to CIA, XYZ, or any other organization, but

his curious behaviour might well make one think so."

Presumably Wingfield forgot about this allegation (which, rather

fortuitously was never published) when he wrote his letter to

MUFON UFO Journal in January 1993. The photographs that would

have appeared with this Editorial are (1) Jim Schnabel walking

away after receiving his prize for coming second in the

Cerealogist's circlefaking competition at West Wycombe, (2) a

photo of Robert Irving, and (3) a photo of the Froxfield

formation. Reading through Michael Green's ditched editorial for

the October 1992 issue of "The Circular" one is left in no doubt

that the Schnabel-Irving Swangate hoax was accepted in full by

the CCCS hierarchy. Of course, an organisation whose leading

illuminati fall for a hoax of this nature can never claim to be a

scientific research group genuinely seeking the truth behind an

anomaly, but Green still has a dam good try. Despite his group's

demonstrable suppression of every single scrap of evidence which

proves that

- most circles are man-made hoaxes (ie direct

confessions, multiple arrests, etc) , and that

- a few may be created by an ill-understood

meteorological phenomenon (eye witness

testimony, etc),

Green continues to claim that CCCS is an organization conducting

proper scientific research in the grip of "well-funded,

organised activity" by a "highly proficient international

group... The CCCS has no doubt that further well-orchestrated

attempts will be made to destroy the crop circle subject in

public perception as a genuine phenomenon."


This astonishing sequence of claim and counter-claim is all part

and parcel of how a small minority of so-called researchers

conduct themselves. The crop circle conspiracy game has now

taken on new significance as a small group of alien-intelligence

believers at the very heart of the CCCS try to deny the reality

of mass crop-circle hoaxing. A variation on the MJ-12 Hoax is

being invented in order to keep the crop circle myth from dying.

No opportunity is being spared in this bitter struggle to deny

what Schnabel and Irving discovered during their under-cover

activities in the Beckhampton Crop Circle Group. In years to

come the untruths promoted in these sources will be used to

perpetuate a belief that crop circles have some exotic paranormal

causation. The winners in this battle will be the flying saucer

believers who created the crop circle myth in the first place.

The losers will be the farmers and those people who pay good

money to buy books which suppress the slightest hint of the

numerous documented facts which detract from the flying saucer

solution. Readers may think that in my writings I have developed

a feverish fixation with criticising and discrediting certain

members of the CCCS. I refute this categorically. More than

half my subscribers are CCCS members and I know quite a few of

them personally. In general they are relatively sensible people

who don't hold sensational views, want to know what's going on

and who usually behave impeccably towards those of us who support

a rational solution. The problem I have with the CCCS relates

solely to the activities of a few prominent members who

repeatedly make untrue statements to the press, who accuse their

opponents of embellishing evidence merely because witnesses

report seeing things these "leading cerealogists" would prefer

them not to see, who falsely claim the credit for other

researcher's work and who keep the facts about hoaxing and eye

witness testimony from the public. In this way a very small group

of people have perpetrated an Anomaly Fraud, what Doug Bower

calls the "conning of the people". Normally UFO frauds involve

small amounts of money made by conning thousands of people into

buying books. In the case of crop circles we have something

completely different, for the cerealogists have created a

mythology which is encouraging mass trespass and criminal damage

by hoaxers. In my opinion the public promotion of this Fraud

will ultimately have to be defended in a Court of Law if

researchers like Armen Victorian and George Wingfield continue to

incite mass crop circle hoaxing merely to reinforce their own

peculiar views about the world we live in. Paul Fuller.

The Independent UFO Network presents

UFOs: Fact, Fraud or Fantasy ?



SOUTH YORKSHIRE (100 yards from the Sheffield Library Theatre)


14th & 15th August 1993

Speakers at this year's conference include

400 seat fully air-conditioned lecture theatre. Refreshments.

Book, magazine & memorabilia stalls. A chance to meet the

speakers and generally have lots of UFOlogical fun. Be there or

be square !

Further details and booking forms from Stu Smith, 15 Rydal

Street, Burnley, Lancashire, BB10 1HS. Telephone 0282 24837.

Please enclose a sae.

News from Japan

Jun-Ichi Takanshi has sent me an English translation of his

"Japanese UFO Science Society" magazine, no 93, which contains

the disturbing news that only 3 formations appeared in Japan

during 1992 - and one of those was a confessed hoax ! According

to Takanshi's records, crop circles first appeared in Japan in

1990 (although Professor Ohtsuki reports at least 13 Japanese

circles between 1979 and 1989). During 1991 and 1992 Takanashi

believes that more than 300 circles appearing at over 40

different locations. Then, "just as if the mystery circles in

Japan realized their illegitimate origin and realized their

defeat, wanted to make their last bow, (so) in 1992, they

appeared in only two places in Japan".

(1) A Mystery Circle Shaped Like A Man's Figure Appeared in A

Pasture (at Fukada-Machi, Kuma-gun, Kumamoto Prefecture).

A passer-by found a mystery circle in a pasture owned by

Tokutoshi Nasu (62) on the afternoon of January 27, 1992.

According to the local newspaper (reporter?) Kumamoto Nichinichi

Shinbun, the single circle was 3 metres in diameter in a field of

grass 30 cms high. There was a 10 metre long track (c 10-20 cms

wide ?) stretching from the circle then splitting into two

"opened legs". This line is crossed by two "arms", which "give

the impression of a man lying flat on his back in the pasture,

with both legs and hands outstretching on both sides". The

passer-by informed the "Education Committee" (school ?) of the

circle and it caused a "considerable sensation" in the town. The

formation bore a distinct resemblance to the stick man at

Roundway Hill near Devizes in 1991. Perhaps we have some jet-

setting hoaxers ??

(2) Two Mystery Circles Appeared in an Uncultivated Field in

Kakogawa City, Hyogo Prefecture.

On the afternoon of May 11th, 1992, around 5 o' clock, two

circles were found in an uncultivated field by Mitsuko Koyama

(68), who was walking her dog. The clockwise circles were both

about 3 metres in diameter and separated a metre apart. They

appeared in 20 cm high vetch/weeds and despite the fact that it

had rained the previous day there was no trace of anyone having

entered the field. The local newspaper reported the discovery

with a large photograph. However, as soon as the circles were

reported two junior high school boys came forward and confessed

to having made the circles. Their families visited their

neighbours to apologise. The boys claimed that one stood in the

centre with a pole whilst the other attached one end of a short

rope to the bottom of the pole and the other end to his foot.

The circles were created by trampling.

(3) Six circles found at Kisen-cho, Rikuzen-Takada City, Iwate

Prefecture. A news cutting reports the discovery of six circles,

all about 1.5-2 metres in diameter, found in an uncultivated

field on December 7th from north Japan. The circles were

separated by about 2 metres and were discovered by a workman who

reported seeing similar circles in a nearby field on December

6th. No photograph or details of these other circles was

published. Takanshi reports that these circles were "rough" with

no characteristically sharp edges. This, he concedes, could

indicate a natural origin.

Takanshi has promised to send us further information about the

Tanaka/Kikuchi eye witness case described in CW13. In the

meantime he has sent me a colour photograph of a "tin can"

allegedly photographed by Roger Beard (exact spelling not known)

which was shown on Japanese TV on September 30th. This resembles

the film shown on BBC TV "Daytime Live" a few years ago which I

believe was taken at Westbury. If readers know anything more

about the Westbury film please let me know so that we can

determine the authenticity of these films. Our thanks to

Takanshi for his help.

If you want a copy of this material write to Jun-Ichi Takanshi,

C.P.O. Box No 1437, Osaka, 530-91; JAPAN.

News from John Stepkowski in Victoria, Australia. Keith

Basterfield reports that despite its national collecting network

the UFO Research Australia team has received not one single

report of a crop circle during the 1991/92 growing season.

Obviously this doesn't auger well for a "natural" anomaly and

only lends credence to the Skeptics' view that all crop circles

are hoaxes.

Archie Roy Speaks on Crop Circles at the Edinburgh Science

Festival According to "The Guardian" (April 22 1993) "The

Edinburgh Science Festival - which ends on Saturday - was always

marked by solemn irrelevance. Last night Professor Archie Roy of

Glasgow was contemplating the search for extra-terrestrial

intelligence and the awful thought that an advanced civilisation

on Proxima Centauri might be watching episodes of Saturday Night

Clive broadcast four year ago. "There is a sphere, expanding at

the speed of light and centred on the Earth, which is carrying at

the front of it the first instalments of Coronation Street and

also the very heavy Distant Early Warning radar signals. And what

another intelligent species would find is that the star we call

the Sun would be anomalously bright in the short wave radio

region; they would argue that this was unusual and they would

argue that this was unusual, and they would be able to detect one

year modulation as a result of the Earth going round the Sun."

After which, they might be looking for us.

"They might even have left a message. At a different lecture

Professor Roy took up the theme of crop circles. 'So many people

have looked upon them as validating their pet theories - the

landing pads of UFOs, complex symbols of the earth's distress at

pollution and so on,' he said. 'Others, who are rather less

ambitious, think it could be hundreds of hedgehogs stamping

round in circles'."

If readers have any further details about Roy's lecture I'd be

very happy to publish selected excerpts to see how many eye

witness accounts/multiple arrests of hoaxers/historical cases

were disseminated to the public by the CCCS' most famous

supporter. FIRE IN THE SKY

Both MUFON UFO Report and The HUFON REPORT carry articles

reviewing the Paramount Pictures movie "Fire in the Sky", which

is the movie version of the famous Travis Walton case of 1975.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the story, Walton was a

member of a logging team who allegedly encountered a bright light

in an Arizona forest. The "UFO" emitted a brilliant light that

struck Walton before lifting him up several feet in the air and

then slamming him down. In blind panic the loggers abandoned

their colleague and drove off in their tipper truck. Returning

only minutes later Walton has disappeared. Despite a widespread

search no trace of Walton could be found. FIVE DAYS LATER Walton

staggered into the nearby village of Snowflake and told his story

of being taken aboard a flying saucer. Then the fun really began


The case has been billed by Paramount as the "true story" of an

"alien abduction", a claim various members of CSICOP have tried

to have removed from bill posters advertising the film. According

to the HUFON Report, the film is less of a dramatic

reconstruction of an alleged UFO event and more of a study of

the effect of Walton's claim on the local community and the

witnesses. The MUFON UFO Journal (February issue) carries

Walton's own views on the way he was treated by the skeptics.

"Fire in the Sky" will be released in Britain on June 25th. We'll

try to evaluate the case itself when the film is released.

Police Helicopter Encounters UFO

The April issue of the HUFON UFO Report also carries a brief

description of what sounds like an important UFO case. According

to the Louisville Courier-Journal, two police officers piloting a

helicopter encountered a glowing pear-shaped UFO the size of a

basketball which literally flew in circles around the helicopter,

which was flying at speeds of up to 100 mph. According to the

account the UFO was first sighted close to the ground and

resembled a bonfire. Officer Kenny Graham shone a 1.5 million

candlepower spotlight on the light and it slowly floated up to

the helicopter's height (500 ft) where it hovered for several

seconds. "Then it took off at a speed I've never seen before",

Graham reported. The UFO made two huge counter-clockwise loops

and then approached the helicopter from its rear. As Graham

pushed the helicopter speed over 100 mph the UFO shot past and

then instantly climbed hundreds of feet into the air. Then the

UFO descended and flew near the helicopter before emitting three

baseball-sized fireballs from out of its middle towards the

helicopter. The fireballs fizzled into nothing. As the helicopter

banked away the UFO disappeared. Intriguingly two police

officers on the ground also saw the UFO although only one saw the

three fireballs. Officer Joe Smolenski tried to chase the UFO in

his patrol car but soon gave up ! The encounter occurred at

12.30 am in the morning over the General Electric Appliance Park

(hmmm). Curiously security staff at the Park only saw the police

helicopter, not the UFO. In addition nothing turned up on radar

at the local airport. Pilot Graham (39) had been flying for 11

years whilst his co-pilot Kenny Downs (also 39) had been flying

for 5 years. Rick Lasher of the National Weather Service

dismissed the possibility that the helicopter had encountered

a "lightning ball" or a meteorological fireball. It had been

snowing earlier in the evening but this stopped at 7:48.

Temperatures were in the 20s, the solid cloud cover was beginning

to disperse and no thunder or electric storms were reported. A

university professor ruled out a meteorite whilst a professor of

mechanical engineering ruled out any known aircraft. Instead he

suggested that possibly the pilots may have misconstrued

reflections created by the snow and heavy atmospheric conditions.

Well, if the facts were as reported this would really be a

cracking case. However, The Crop Watcher's international fame

and influence extends so far that we actually have two

subscribers in Louisville - Erik and Mary Albrektson - who have

kindly sent us the following information recalled from their

local press reports:-

"About 3 days after the enclosed article appeared, a local couple

contacted the paper and informed them that, somewhat to their

embarrassment, they were responsible for the incident. It seems

that this young couple had a fairly long and well established

history of constructing small hot air balloons from balsa wood

and plastic dry cleaner bags. They would assemble these items,

place several small birthday cake candles inside, and launch a

homemade hot air balloon. A rather odd hobby perhaps, but

nevertheless a hobby that was confirmed by neighbours. They

reside in the immediate vicinity of the incident.

They reported that on the evening of the 'dogfight' they had

launched one of these balloons and then watched in amazement as a

police 'copter flew into the area and appeared to 'investigate'

the balloon. They saw the copter direct a high-intensity

searchlight onto the balloon, circle around and then fly off into

the night. They did not think the incident particularly

newsworthy until they learned of the UFO report some time later.

The police officers have refused to back down from their story

that they saw something other than a small hot air balloon. The

entire affair totally disappeared from the papers with the

publication of the 2nd story. The impression was left that the

police department and particularly the officers involved were

extremely embarrassed and wanted to distance themselves from it


Well ! What an astonishing revelation. Is it really possible

that two "veteran" pilots could really be fooled into believing

that they had fought a "dog-fight" with a small lighted laundry

bag ? If so this would extend the boundaries of professional

fallibility right off the end of the scale. But let's examine

the report to see if we can see if the facts agree with the

explanation. To begin with the pilot's description of the way the

UFO slowly floated upwards as he shone his searchlight on it fits

very well with a small lighted balloon. We might speculate that

on reaching 500 feet the balloon would be caught inside the

horizontal cork-screw vortex that surrounds all aircraft as they

move through the air - this vortex would presumably suck the

balloon through two large loops, thus giving the impression that

the helicopter was being chased. After such violent movement the

balloon might have simply collapsed, thus accounting for the

UFO's rapid disappearance. In short the hot air balloon makes an

excellent explanation. But what about the 3 tiny fireballs ? And

would such a flimsy contraption remain fully-lighted when being

swirled around at 100 mph ? We will keep you informed on this

one. Thanks are due to Erik and Mary for their kind help.


Finally, and I've wanted to say this for quite some time, I'd

like to make it clear that we too never believed those vicious

stories about Jason Donovan, the well known "massive hetero-

sexual figure". Jason is clearly a real man/stud and anyone who

dares to suggest otherwise deserves to have the pants sued off

them (??) in the High Court. And as for John Major's Libel

action against The New Statesman, well if we can't comment on

things which have already been published elsewhere just what is

the world coming to ?


The Crop Watcher is an independent non-profit-making magazine

devoted to the scientific study of crop circles and the social

mythology that accompanies them. All articles are copyright to

the authors and should not be reproduced without obtaining

written permission from the authors. Articles appearing in The

Crop Watcher do not necessarily reflect the views of the Editor

or other contributors. Contributors are always welcome to submit

articles for publication and will receive free copies of The Crop

Watcher in return. Offers of exchange magazines are always welcome.


High quality aerial photographs of crop circles available from

Richard Wintle, Calyx Photo News, Marlborough House, 26 High

Street, Swindon, Wiltshire, SN1 3EP. Telephone 0793-520131 and

ask for Julie.

Quality aerial photographs of the 1992 Wiltshire formations. 6" x

4" = # 1.25. Posters also available. For a full list and detailed

description please send a sae to Anthony Horn, 23 Sea View Drive,

Scarborough, North Yorkshire, YO11 3HY.

The Crop Watcher is printed by Northern Arts Publishing, Roper

Lane, Thurgoland, South Yorkshire. S30 7AA. Telephone 0742



The Crop Watcher is published six times a year and costs # 1.50

to UK subscribers and # 2.50 to overseas subscribers. A full

year's subscription costs # 9.00 to UK subscribers and # 15.00

sterling for overseas subscribers. Please make cheques payable

to "Paul Fuller" (not "The Crop Watcher"). Overseas

subscribers should not send cheques drawn on overseas banks.

Cheques drawn on banks which are not part of the British clearing

system attract a commission of about # 10 per cheque.

Subscriptions can also be sent via an International Money Order.

A limited number of back issues are available. All

correspondence should be sent to Paul Fuller, 3 Selborne Court,

Tavistock Close, ROMSEY, Hampshire, SO51 7TY.


"Crop Circles, A Mystery Solved" by Jenny Randles and Paul Fuller

(Robert Hale Ltd), # 5.99 pb. A new and extensively updated

edition will be published in 1993. MAGAZINES FEATURED IN


GEM, Gloucestershire Earth Mysteries, PO Box 258, Cheltenham,

Gloucestershire, GL53 0HR (sample issue # 2.75).

HUFON REPORT, PO Box 942, Bellaire, Texas 77402-0942, United

States of America. $ 2 plus p&p. per issue.

MUFON UFO JOURNAL, 103 Oldtowne Road, Seguin, Texas 78155-4099,

United States of America. Subscription for UK residents $ 30 per

year for 12 issues. Japan UFO Science Society Newsletter. Jun-

Ichi Takanashi, C.P.O. Box No 1437, Osaka, 530-91; JAPAN.

Northern UFO News, 37 Heathbank Road, Cheadle Heath, Stockport,

Cheshire, SK3 0UP. Six for # 7.

Stop Press: Yes, we too have just read George Wingfield's

allegations about supporters of the "plasma-vortex theory" being

involved in hoaxing in Tim Good's new book. We will be issuing

a full statement denying these false allegations in our next

issue and are taking legal advice.


Chris Rutkowski -

University of Manitoba - Winnipeg, Canada

From (Chris Rutkowski) Sat Jan 15 15:57:40 1994


From: (Chris Rutkowski)

Newsgroups: alt.paranet.ufo

Subject: Crop Watcher #17

Summary: CW 17

Keywords: crop circles

Message-ID: <2h9lc4$>

Date: 15 Jan 94 20:57:40 GMT

Organization: The University of Manitoba

Lines: 2926


Crop Watcher #17


Welcome to yet another edition of The Crop Watcher. By now

probably everyone in the little world of cereology will have

heard about an astonishing new book that has just been published

by Hamish Hamilton. The book is called "Round in Circles" (it

costs # 16.99) and the author is that well known CIA agent Jim

Schnabel. Subtitled "Physicists, Poltergeists, Pranksters and

the Secret History of the Cropwatchers", this book goes where no

book about anomalies has ever gone before - at least not in

Britain. Quite simply it is the most amusing, libellous, frank,

myth-smashing collection of allegations that you'll ever likely

to read.

I warn you, if you are a leading "cereologist", read this book

with care. "Round in Circles" tells most of the untold story of

how the crop circle myth was conceived and executed. Its superb

treatment of the subject strips away all the myths and legends

which were created to promote a mystery at any cost. Its great

strength is its treatment of leading crop circle personalities.

As someone who lived through much of the crop circle era I

thought I knew more than most about the key events, the people

involved and their peculiar personal problems, but here Schnabel

reveals secrets that I never dreamed would appear in print

(including a few even I didn't know), although I've hinted

carefully at a few in these pages. For many of our leading

cerealogists this book leaves them naked and dirty, their crimes

catalogued for all to see. The book discusses the following


- revelations about Michael Green's apparent membership of a

group of hooded black magicians who might even be involved in

pagan activities and animal sacrifices (pages 242-3);

- allegations that Michael Green was once persecuted by invisible

entities that materialised as horned 'shadows' (page 136);

- Pat Delgado's crazed possession by an evil spirit during

"Operation Whitecrow" (page 105-8) and his apparent ability to

channel messages from "Zirkka", an alien intelligence (page


- the claim that Colin Andrews once believed he had an alien

implant in his forehead (page 84); and

- Jim Schnabel's own admission that he created the "charm

bracelet" formation near Silbury Hill in 1992 as well as numerous

other formations.

Throughout the book Schnabel deals with the personalities and

politics of circles research by airing some deeply contentious

issues. One issue concerns Taylor and Tuersleys' claim that they

were denied proper credit and royalties from the marketing of

"Circular Evidence". Another concerns marital problems

experienced by several of our leading cereologists. There is even


interesting legal correspondence dating from 1988 but you'll have

to buy the book to see what fascinating revelations it contains !

Just to give you a brief taste of the kind of material this book

contains, here's how Jim Schnabel describes a very famous

incident that allegedly occurred during Operation Whitecrow (page


"'Ahhhggggggggggggh' screamed Delgado, as the awful release of

energy hurled him to the ground. His back arched. Strange

guttural noises came from his mouth. His head jutted unnaturally

sideways. The entity ... The entity ...

George Wingfield felt as if he were somehow under hypnosis. It

was all so unreal. He seemed to have lost his will ... his free

will ... Something made him get up and join Rita at the far edge

of the circle. The noise had stopped moving. It was close to them

now, only a few yards away, down amid the stalks of barley.

'If you can understand us, stop !' said Rita.

And ... it stopped ... For an awkward moment there were only the

muted noises of human gurgling and sobbing."

As I write these lines the claims and allegations in this

astonishingly funny book are echoing around what is left of the

cerealogists' fading empire. No doubt even before this issue of

The Crop Watcher can be printed various leading cerealogists will

be desperately trying to deny the facts presented here. For our

part we have noted quite a few minor errors, several major errors

and quite a few important omissions, but we can still endorse 98

per cent of the book as factually correct. We will be presenting

a full review in our next issue as it is important to add a few

points of clarification.

Following all this gnashing of teeth comes the astonishing News

that John Michell is planning to hand over the Editorship of The

Cerealogist to George Wingfield and John Haddington. Obviously

we'll have to wait and see what reasons lie behind this

remarkable handover of power.

Also, I'm sure the hoaxers amongst you will be interested to

learn that on June 15th there was an item on Meridian TV News

(formerly TVS) to the effect that the National Farmers Union and

the police are out to prosecute crop circle hoaxers and that

numerous farmers have now closed their fields to sight seers and

researchers. An item expressing similar sentiments appeared in

some of the

Wiltshire papers a day or two earlier. Clearly the NFU have now

woken up after all the revelations about crop circle hoaxing

these past two years. In our view this action is well overdue.

Crop Circles, Squashed Animals and Unidentified Flying Objects

I expect most of you missed the following article by Andrew

Langley in the "Rural Diary" series in Weekend Telegraph, January

18th 1992. Langley claims that:

"The other day I was out looking for mushrooms. It was a murky,

lowering, homicidal kind of afternoon, when the rooks and the

jays seem to sneer at you. I was crossing a steep hillside [A-HA

!!] when I saw the corpse. Right in the middle of the field lay a

dutiful mother, struck down as she went about her lawful


It was a vixen, on the face of it nothing to get excited about.

There is no shortage of foxes in Wiltshire, and one should not be

startled to find a dead one ...

But this fox was not simply dead. She was squashed flat, crushed

with considerable force and left, outspread and moth-eaten, like

the carpet in the old dug-out bar of Broadley's. Only the

grinning head was intact.

So what ? You may think. Wild animals are flattened by cars and

lorries in their thousands every year. Not, though, in the centre

of a field, at least a mile away from the nearest lane.

I have pondered on this mystery ever since. It seems a murder

singular enough to stretch to the Great Detective himself. How

did this fox die ? Who or what had squashed her ? The only beast

big enough to do it would be a cow. And what self-respecting fox

is going to sit motionless while a bovine posterior descends upon

her ?

Perhaps the vixen had been run over by a joyrider in a combine

harvester. Perhaps she had been dropped from a helicopter at

2,000 ft. Perhaps she had been struck amidships by a hunk of

frozen urine jettisoned from a passing jumbo jet. Over to you


Well, what a strange tale. But readers of The Circular (vol 3,

no 1, page 25) will recall that Bob Kingsley published the

following information, which was originally published in

Warminster UFO News, Nos 14/15:-

"Don Julius, an investigator for the Westmorland UFO Study Group

turned up a report on July 18th, 1972, of a dead dog, found in

strange circumstances.

The collie was found lying on its back and all the hairs on the

dog's body had been removed except for a few. There was no

evidence of any sort of 'attack' and the body was found about 40

feet from a circular area where the grass was whipped in counter-

clockwise direction, although some grass lay in a clockwise

direction. This circular area was 6 feet in diameter. Power lines

are in the area, the nearest being about 400 feet from where the

dog was found.

The dog had been seen alive on July 13th At about the same time a

neighbour reported their two cats had disappeared. It was noted

that no scavengers had touched the dog's body which had been in

the area five days. It is assumed the dog had been dead that

long, as it had a friendly nature and the 'Smiths' do not feel

it would have stayed away from home long. There had been rain

during this period and the investigators could find no tracks

near the body."

So, what do we make of this ? A dead dog near an area of swirled

grass ?? Peculiar to say the least. But in the May 1993 issue of

MUFON UFO Journal, Michael Strainic has written a fascinating

account of a porcupine that had been discovered "squashed flat"

in a crop circle at Milestone, Saskatchewan. According to


"... the animal was found on top of the flattened (yet still

undamaged) wheat"

and that despite this apparent lack of damage to the wheat the

porcupine was flattened "in situ - to approximately a one-inch


Now I have to admit that I'm not very good with biology, but

according to Strainic some porcupines weigh in at 22-27 kgs

(50-60 pounds). This suggests that this unfortunate animal was

squashed flat by some tremendous force - perhaps by a steam

roller ?

The Milestone "circle" was, in fact, three roughly triangular

areas containing anti-clockwise swirls and measuring 63 by 22

feet in total. Inside each rectangle was a central area of

standing wheat - similar to those recalled by Paul Germany in the

1930s in East Anglia (see CW9, pages 26-29).

Strainic's report concludes that

"... some weeks after the event, evidence testifying to the

passing of the porcupine was still quite visible. The trace

marks which were left on the ground suggest the following

sequence of events: the animal, while attending to typical

porcupine affairs, was suddenly, and without any warning, caught

up in whatever force or mechanism is responsible for the creation

of the circles. At what point the porcupine actually shuffled off

his mortal coil is impossible to say. But it is apparent that it

was dragged - or pushed, or manoeuvred, or perhaps had even

dragged itself - through the mud and wheat from one corner of the

formation, a total of somewhere on the order of 40+ feet, to its

final resting place."

"The porcupine was discovered lying on top of the flattened

grain. The quills of the porcupine were arranged in such a way as

to suggest that they had been swirled by the same force that had

affected the wheat. Quills and wheat were intertwined. As well,

the porcupine had been pushed right down into the mud - there was

mud on the animal and there were quills and wheat left in the

mud. The mud, including that with porcupine parts, was highly

compressed and completely dried out. The mud was so dry and so

compacted that pieces of it could not be broken by hand."

This bizarre scene was discovered by Joe Rennick, the owner of

the farm, and after taking photos of the porcupine Rennick

disposed of the carcass. However, it was soon learnt that a

similar event occurred in 1989 at Estevan (also in Saskatchewan),

when the skeletal remains of a porcupine was discovered in a

charred or perhaps oily circular patch of flattened wheat. This

earlier case attracted sufficient publicity that the Royal

Canadian Mounted Police conducted a somewhat inconclusive

investigation. There was a suspicion by the RCMP that some kind

of "cult sacrifice" had taken place, but this was never proven.

So, now we have a squashed fox, found in a field miles from

nowhere, a flayed dog found 40 feet from a swirled area, a

porcupine found squashed flat inside some swirled rectangular

areas, and the skeleton of a porcupine found inside an oily

blackened patch of flattened (but no necessarily swirled) wheat.

Odder and odder ! But what's this I find in Ted Philips' Physical

Trace Catalogue:-

Case 249, November 1966. U.S.A., Gallipolis, OHIO. William

Watson's German Shepherd dog disappeared and was found a week

later in the centre of an isolated field. The knee-high grass

around the dog's body was pressed flat in a perfect circle 20

foot in diameter. Every bone in the body was crushed, no blood in

evidence. (John Keel)

Case 293sp: September 7th, 1967. U.S.A., Alamosa, Colorado. A

horse was found dead, the hide removed from the neck and head. No

blood found on the animal or in the area. 15 round imprints were

arranged in a circle nearby. A 3 ft high bush had been depressed

to within 10 inches of the ground. The depressed area was about

20 ft. in diameter. (AP and Personal Files)

Case 529, July 13th, 1972. U.S.A., Greensburg, PA. A collie dog

was found lying on its back, all its hair removed. The dog was 40

ft from a circular area where the grass was swirled in a counter-

clockwise direction. The area was 6 ft in diameter. (Skylook)

So, we now have 7 cases involving squashed or flayed animals

dating back to 1966, all but one of which were associated with

unusual circular ground traces and three of which were actually

inside the "circle". Now how on earth do we try to rationalise

something as this ?

In "Crop Circles, A Mystery Solved" (page 148-9) we discussed a

peculiar case from Shropshire when a dog was seen by two

witnesses to run into a strange luminous cloud. The cloud was 15

metres or so in diameter and was described as 'like a yellow

fog'. The cloud was rotating like a whirlwind and was

accompanied by a rushing wind-like noise as it disturbed nearby

leaves and dust. The witnesses noticed a horrible sulphurous

smell (which is a common feature of unusual vortex cases in

Corliss' sourcebooks) as well as feeling their hair standing on

end (a sure sign of an electro-static field). The dog ran into

the glow and completely

disappeared. Then the cloud dispersed and the dog was recovered.

It was soaking and hot to the touch. The dog's eyes were red and

bloodshot and it was panting heavily. Although the elderly dog

recovered from this event it died less than six months later -

probably from old age rather than the event itself. CERES' David

Reynolds later showed that the event provably occurred downwind

of the nearest hill - a 300 metre high ridge. This, of course, is

a classic lee-slope situation.

Now it seems to me that despite the satanic overtones we have a

series of potentially important events. In my opinion these

events have several possible explanations:-

Explanation 1: Errors in Reporting

All these events have been erroneously reported by writers who

saw what they wanted to see but missed other clues which were

capable of explaining the events.

Explanation 2: Hoax !

All these animals were flattened or flayed by hoaxers who also

decided to create nearby circular ground traces because they all

shared the same archetypal motif of what UFOs are supposed to do

(kill animals and leave circular traces).

Explanation 3: Animal Sacrifice !

Some previously unknown "cult" has spread around the world where

the creation of swirled ground traces and the sacrifice of

unfortunate local wildlife plays an important role in their

unpleasant rituals. Given the current outbreak of horse

mutilations in England (where at least a dozen people have been

questioned or cautioned by the Police) this scenario is not

entirely without supporting evidence.

Explanation 4: Vortex !

Some unusual atmospheric vortex mechanism descended in such a way

that it squashed the animals, or sucked their hide/skin/quills

from their bodies, and left the circles behind (perhaps in a

subsequent, less-energetic phase ?). This could be a mechanism

similar to that in the Shropshire case, where the dog was

fortunate enough to survive (the strange cloud was positioned

over a hedge so no permanent trace was produced).

Now I'm not going to leap before I look here but any combination

of answers may be possible. If readers have any views on these

peculiar cases write to the editorial address on page 36 and have

your say. PF.

Circlemakers or Rootless Flummery ?

by Robert France

As a psychical researcher and practical occultist of some years

experience, I was planning a discourse on why much of the present

'psychic questing', brought into vogue by Andrew Collins, is a

questionable practice - plus the scrutiny of some highly dubious

aspects of his interactive novels, such as The Black Alchemist.

Such critical reviews must wait, as I have recently come into

possession of some information and a letter which is quite

interesting, perhaps acting as a precursor to any proposed 'myth-

smashing' of questing.

Our story begins on Saturday 22 August 1992 and a 'Cornference'

held in Salisbury, attending this conference was Andy Collins and

his companion, Debbie Benstead. A casual acquaintance of mine -

we will call him Steve Watts, was staying at my home, as he

wanted to attend, and my location was fairly convenient for

trains to the venue. On the Saturday evening, upon his return

from the first days proceeds, he held out a letter to me.

"Have a read of that", he crowed with a grin on his face.

I shrugged, took the letter and casually perused it. Surprise

number one was when I realised that the writer was Trevor James

Constable, author of The Cosmic Pulse of Life. Surprise number

two was when I saw that it was addressed to Andy Collins. I

looked up at Steve and eyed him suspiciously - I asked him where

he had got it from. "Ah, read it first", he teased.

I went back to the letter and began to read, a little more

attentively this time round. I prematurely assumed that this

letter would be an endorsement of Collins' latest release from

what seems to be a ceaseless flow from a printing press - on the

contrary, I found myself reading what seemed to be a scathing

rebuttal of The Circlemakers, from the man who Collins had

referred to at

considerable length. In a nutshell, it appears that Mr Constable

doesn't like the idea of Collins using text and photographs from

Cosmic Pulse without permission. I wonder why ?

I finished the quite lengthy text and turned to Steve, "Right,

where did this come from ?". He sat in silence for a few moments,

then between sips of coffee, told me that at the conference, Andy

had showed him the letter - he then says that Debbie then let him

photocopy it (which to me sounds a rather roundabout way of doing

things). When I asked Steve to repeat how he got hold of it to

my colleague, Clive Potter, he did tend to fumble and mutter his

words a bit, perhaps he was exaggerating the circumstances

slightly ? I have also been given a copy of another letter, which

is Collins' published response to a review of his latest book by

Clive Potter in The Cropwatcher #13. In this letter Collins

states, "If I had the chance again, I would rewrite the book

completely". That's the least I'd do if I got such a letter from

Mr Constable. If I'd "Had the chance again", I'd take The

Circlemakers and bury it with shame in an unmarked grave (until

someone dug it up again using questing techniques and returned it

!). As I said goodbye to Steve on the Sunday evening, I decided

that I would look into the circumstances of this letter. The

obvious first step would be to verify it from the man himself,

Trevor James Constable. On the 8th October, my letter was

winging its way to his address - where did I get that from ? The

top of Steve's letter, of course.

Constable's immediate response was verification of the letter,

plus a statement to the effect that he would not have allowed

Collins to use his photographs in connection with The

Circlemakers - even if he had been asked ! Constable then goes on

to accuse Collins of plagiarism, taking passages out of Cosmic

Pulse and with a slight rewriting, presenting them as though they

were his own work.... Hang on a minute, Trevor, if you bother to

look at Andy's response to Clive's review in The Crop Watcher,

you will find that he clearly states.... "The Circlemakers began

as a diary entry in July 1991 and grew steadily into a 350-page

burst of inspiration...". Oh dear, perhaps inspiration is not

quite the right word. Constable suggests that Rudolph Steiner's

kind of clairvoyance is very different to the 'rootless flummery'

of Debbie Benstead's psychism.

In his '350-page burst of inspiration', Collins applies his years

of UFO research to the subject and states that the idea of

intelligently-controlled UFOs are crap. This is one area where Mr

Constable takes the 'uncontrollable urgency in a young man' to

task. Constable states that his years of research points to TWO

distinct types of UFO which are MUTUALLY confused. He classes

them as 'Ether-ships' and 'bioforms' - the latter also

affectionately known as 'critters' - but haven't you heard,

Trevor, the idea of 'Ether-ships' are crap ? Collins' distortion

is found on page 15 of The Circlemakers, "Constable had expounded

his belief that UFOs are not alien spacecraft at all, but amoeba-

like life-forms existing in the upper atmosphere".

We DO have a problematic situation here, the main part of which

is that Andy is so busy scratching away at his books that

precious little time is available for any really meaningful

research. Constable makes this abundantly clear when he says that

Andy has 'genned-up' on Steiner and Reich rather than actually

bothering to study their work - he advises Andy to start by

reading "Function of the Orgasm" by Wilhelm Reich (a book which

Andy now belatedly possesses) ..... he now requires a copy of

"Contact with Space", by the same author.

I will be smug and state that at least, in his letter to me,

Constable did credit me with knowing my subject, but then as a

practical occultist, I am by definition a student.

Throughout his distorted books which are paraded as fact, he has

catered to a public who themselves do not know any different,

they are exposed only to his ignorance, and because they

themselves find a 'queer-shaped bit of flint', hail him as the

figurehead of 'questing'. It is on this foundation that they are

handed the mutated and twisted versions of Constable, Steiner and

Reich -versions which suit the world according to Andy Collins.

In Earthquest News (Winter 1992) Andrews concedes that Constable

suggested that there are two kinds of UFO - the structured

spacecraft and the bioform. He concludes the statement by saying:

"I only have faith in the second solution, which can adequately

explain the first solution". This edition of Earthquest News has

a piccy of a 'bioform', but Collins cannot, unfortunately,

compare it with one of Constable's due to copyright

restrictions - a bit like bolting the door afterwards, isn't it ?

I have corresponded with Collins on these matters. I introduced

myself by way of submitting a true experience involving a ball-

of-light phenomenon. I let Andy think that The Circlemakers had

opened big, bright, new doorways of understanding. Andy found my

experience 'interesting', then he waffles on about the Earth-

light idea being correct. But this is only half the story because

the bioform concept embraces Earth-lights and takes the whole

thing to new heights. Apparently Collins... Sorry Constable's

ideas...Well, half of Constable's ideas, only very slightly

rewritten and mildly misinterpreted and marginally out of

context, backed up with 'plagiarised' photographs and packaged as

a 350-page burst of inspiration, can explain nearly all UFO

encounters - possibly all of them - but as Collins tells me,

he'll need another book to show how - of that I don't doubt !

In my follow-up letter to Collins (dated 8th November 1992) I

asked the crucial question, "What I would be interested in is any

comments that Mr Constable himself may have made about The

Circlemakers". A reply was received 3 days later and Andy first

of all told me that he was glad to see that I agreed with much of

his words in the book - I never said that - then went on to say

that Constable doesn't like The Circlemakers because it doesn't

progress the understanding of orgone in a proper scientific

manner, (sorry Andy, and there was me thinking that it had

something to do with Constable's claims of you 'ripping him

off'). Collins also suggests that Constable is unhappy that he

is commenting on a subject which the latter has studied for many

years - it is important to note that Collins does not mention

the original letter or its true contents, even though there is no

apparent secrecy. The reason for noting this point will be

understood shortly.

While only a side-issue, there is perhaps a relevance in the

dislike which Constable demonstrates, afterall, up to now we have

been up to our bookshelves in The Black Alchemist, The Seventh

Sword, plus tapes and various other merchandise. As Andy states

in his letter to The Crop Watcher, The Circlemakers began as a

diary entry in July 1991, the book ends in February 1992 - less

than a year from beginning to end qualifies you to forward a

'revolutionary new vision of the crop-circle enigma' ? Only now

is Andy actually borrowing books from the library to learn more

about the pioneers to whom he does little justice ! Readers of

Collins' book will know that Andy's research began when a

paperback book became slightly dislodged after Debbie thought she

saw an adjacent book move. Actually I find this part of his story

quite humorous (I admit to having a rather pathetic sense of

humour). On this particular page (and remember this is after

Collins has crossed blades with rogue magicians, received cursed

death-threats, laid to rest negative energies and confronted

landscape guardians). Debbie actually says to him, "I don't want

to alarm you, and its probably nothing, but I think I saw that

book move on its own" (my

emphasis, RF). With the activity that Collins has been involved

in, why should she for one moment think that he would be alarmed

in the slightest about a mild case of possibly over-excited

imagination, or mild telekinesis ?

Its a strange and possibly uncanny parallel, but I think of The

Circlemakers as Collins thinks of alien spacecraft. In his letter

to The Crop Watcher, Collins asks where Clive Potter has been for

the last ten years, "I see no books or ground-breaking work on

crop circles or questing by him, anywhere". Firstly, of course,

there are more than these two lines of research, and secondly

Clive has been working with me on my projects - February 1992

beginning with Shadow of Man, a well received and thoughtful

analysis of the UFO mystery in the form of an audio tape - but

not having the capital available to produce even badly bound

books I can't churn out my ideas (which include the use and

manipulation of orgone and so-called 'bioforms', the focusing of

this energy to retain and even retard Cancer, and so on).

Ultimately I informed Collins that whether he knew it or not,

there were copies of Constables's damning letter going around.

"No problem", came the reply, "I photographed pages and handed

them around to primary researchers to put them in the picture".

Collins then adds that plagiarism is a very serious accusation to

make against any author. He then assures me that this has not

been the case - but note, he made no mention of this until I

raised the issue directly.

In his letter to Constable dated 20th August, Collins apologises

for using photos without permission, but as he couldn't make

contact with Constable, it was a gamble that he decided to take -

he goes on to say that he does admit to sometimes writing rather

naively. Of further interest is that he states that he doesn't

consider himself a scientist, an occultist, or even a UFOlogist

or a psychic researcher. He suggests, instead, that he's just 'a

man off the street'. But on the other hand, in his letter to The

Crop Watcher, he reminds us that between 1975 and 1981 he was an

investigator with BUFORA and UFOIN, and that since then he's

worked extensively in the earth-mysteries fields of research. He

does sound a little confused, doesn't he ?

The dissemination of Constable's letter in what is claimed as

such a casual manner is rather curious, because if this has been

handed round to 'prime researchers', that is certainly not how I

would describe Steve Watts, who co-authored a book many years

ago which was nothing to do with crop-circles or orgone, since

then he has produced nothing for public or private circulation -

he is even now, only on the fairly meaningless fringes of circles

research. So, as Clive suggests, for 'prime researchers' perhaps

we should read 'Collins' closest chums'. Afterall, even after

close enquiry, Collins would not have informed me of Constable's

letter or true accusations had I not stated the fact that I knew

of them.

So there we have it. I do believe this article succeeds in its

attempt to bring to public attention a situation which ought to

be known outside of the chosen few. It is the public who buy the

books so it is they who must be enlightened - do they think that

Collins has plagiarised Constable's work ? On the other hand, it

may not be fair to ask Collin's readers this question, as he does

seem to suggest that he writes for a popular and young audience

whom he could easily lose if he were to use big words or try to

explain something which requires the use of intelligence.

One final point is that this 'man off the street', who's not an

occultist, nor UFO researcher, etc, plans to co-ordinate the crop

circle community an attempt to communicate with non-human

intelligences thought to be involved with crop-circle

formation.... Blimey, now that could be worth writing a book

about ! RF.

A Response to Robert France

by Andrew Collins

How do you even begin to reply to this [words deleted, PF] by

Robert France ? Not only has he picked and chosen sentences and

statements at random from correspondence between four different

sources, he quite clearly wants everyone to revel in his and his

group's co-ordinated campaign of hatred.

There are many accusations in Mr France's statements which need

rectifying, and for this I will have need to quote at length from

various letters and resume events stretching back over the past

two years.

In July 1991 I sampled the British phenomenon of crop formations

for the first time, having worked in the UFO, earth mysteries and

psychic fields of research as an investigator and writer since

1975. By the way, despite what Mr France claims in his

introduction none of my books are 'interactive novels' but

thoroughly researched accounts of personal experiences backed-up

with sound historical verification.

Being let loose on the crop formations of Wiltshire for the first

time turned up various curious facts, witnesses accounts and

anecdotal stories, as well as a considerable amount of psychic

inspiration from my partner Debbie Benstead. It also became

apparent that many quite obvious links between crop circles and

the earth mysteries had never been stated before in print.

Among the synchronicities (i.e. meaningful coincidences) before

this fateful journey to Wiltshire was the rediscovery of my

`lost' copy of SKY CREATURES, a 1978 abridged version of Trevor

James Constables' 1976 book THE COSMIC PULSE OF LIFE (it simply

slid out from above another, unconnected book; no more, Mr

France). Wondering whether it might contain any thoughts on UFO

nests I browsed through its pages for a few minutes but found

none. The book was then slotted back in its place and the whole

matter forgotten.

Statements made by Debbie during our weekend in Wiltshire

concerning orgone masses reminded me of Constable's living

entities, his so-called `critters' or bioforms, so on our return

to Essex I finally got down to reading Constables' book. When I

came to the chapter which showed that Constable had concluded

that the Tully reeds circles of 1966 onwards, as well as other

scorched circles in New Zealand, were probably the result of his

'critters' coming into contact with the earth, I knew we were on

to something, particularly when he referred to their attraction

to bodies of water as 'cold, contractive, water-hungry energy'


His findings in connection with both Reich and his so-called

Bioforms were incorporated, with references and quotes, into

Chapter Seventeen of THE CIRCLEMAKERS. The rest of the book

previewed our own findings connecting orgone with crop circles,

UFOs and earth mysteries. I also looked at historical circles,

UFO nests, the ill-effects of orgone, and ended the book with my

own views on the relationship between pure intelligent energy

forms and the human mind, with particular reference to UFO

abductions, contactees, psychic communications. None of it had

any direct connection with Constable's own work.

THE CIRCLEMAKERS was finished in April 1992 and already I was

seeking permission to use certain photographs taken by Trevor

James Constable. Twice I wrote to two different American

publishers connected with Constable. Finally, in early June I

reached the Borderland Sciences group of Garberville, California,

who promote Constable's latter-day weather-engineering work. The

editor of their journal, Thomas Brown, rang me to say he was in

contact with Constable and that I should not worry as Borderland

held the copyright to `most' of Constable's pictures, which he

had given them. He also said there would be no problem about

copyright from either them or from Trevor (indeed, they gave me

permission to use an illustration from one of their own

publications). So I went ahead and published the book and in the

meantime wrote to Constable at his address in Hawaii.

The response from Constable was dated 15 August 1992, a month or

so after the book was published. In three pages of verbal abuse

he condemned the whole project as misinterpreting his and Reich's

work. He suggested that I had failed to comprehend the contents

of THE COSMIC PULSE OF LIFE and accused me of ignoring his

findings concerning two specific types of UFO - the structured

craft and the bioform. He also suggested that my partner Debbie's

'spurious clairvoyance' was `rootless flummery' (a stupid

statement) and that if I wanted a real understanding of psychism

I should study the entire works of Rudolf Steiner. He added: `If

you keep on along this line, Mr Collins, you will spoil your own

future unfoldment, so this is a suggestion that you eschew all

that stuff (i.e. the `spurious clairvoyance') without delay, and

before you provoke attention from the astral planes that may

cause you to wish you had never been born.'

The subject of the photographs was not Constable's main problem,

although it didn't help ease Constables' view that I was

distorting his sacrosanct findings concerning UFOs; a case of

standing on someone's foot before you've introduced yourself.

His worst claim was `You have lifted many passages out of COSMIC

PULSE and presented them with minor re-writing as though they

were your own work. This kind of plagiarism will not go unnoticed

in the world, Mr Collins.'

Despite this Constable ends on the fatherly note of `Your motives

are good, Mr Collins, but this world is currently incapable of

understanding or accepting what stands behind the crop circles.

Constable, Steiner and Reich can perhaps lead you to understand

why this is so...' and earlier on he says : `I want you to

understand clearly that I do not impugn your motives. Your good

intention to try and vindicate me is quite apparent. Such

vindication can only come long after I am gone from the earth.

The lust for vindication does not burn in me.'

Putting the letter down, I could not believe what I was reading.

There's me writing a book that completely vindicates his work,

confirms his theories and shows that Constable was a man years

ahead of his time, and all he does is throw it all back in my

face with claims of `rootless flummery' and `plagiarism', which

was simply untrue.

What I had no idea of at the time was that no one in the orgone

business has anything good to say about anyone else. Constable is

hated by many people and has been accused of distorting Reich's

work by rivals such as James de Meo and the late Jerome Eden, who

worked extensively on the relationship between orgone and UFOs

(see below).

Instantly I responded to Constable in a letter dated 20 August

1992. Here I tried to answer each and every query. I apologised

for the use of his pictures, even though he said `what is done is

done'. On his accusation of 'plagiarism' I had this to say: 'When

people ask me the best source for Reich I suggest your books,

which is why my writing has drawn largely from your words. (In

Chapter Seventeen) I was not trying to plagiarise any of your

work; I was simply trying to tell the story from your own

perspective; your own course of discovery... Yet when re-working

factual information there is only so many new words you can find

before lapsing back into phraseology that matches the original

text'. I pointed out that it was clearly 'a review of your

work... giving the reader the chance to seek out your books to

enable them to gain a deeper understanding of their theories.'

No plagiarism took place, other than Constable seeking some

justification for seeing a resume of just one small part of his

own work in somebody else's book.

On his criticism of the book's flippant style, I said: `I write

enthusiastically and sometimes naively, this I admit. I am not a

scientist, an occultist, or even a ufologist or a psychical

researcher; in fact, I am just a man off the street with an eager

taste to dissect and speculate upon the mysteries of life.' which

is entirely true.

As to Constable's claim that I would end up `bitterly regretting'

the writing of THE CIRCLEMAKERS I said `...should I ever get the

chance to rewrite THE CIRCLEMAKERS, it would turn out a wholly

different book altogether.' And this is true as well. Any writer

would make such a statement. However, one year later and I don't

bitterly regret writing the book at all; far from it.

On Constables' accusation that I had only cited him as believing

in the orgone bioform solution to UFOs, I pointed out that on

page 170 of my book I do state `that you retained your firm

belief in physical spacecraft, yet considered that even they

utilised some form of propulsion system involving orgone energy.

Constable's main concern was that I should have given equal space

to the physical flying saucers and cited his work relating to UFO

propulsion systems. He sometimes referred to these as Ether

Ships, whereas as early as 1946 Borderland founder Mead Layne had

talked about Ether Ships as 'thought constructs' - intelligent

entities that form bodies from etheric substances (2). To me this

is just another name for Constables' bioforms or 'critters'. In

no way do I dismiss ether ships as Mr France has claimed, I just

don't see them as anything to do with 'nuts and bolts' spacecraft

(Chapter Seventeen is called 'Return of the Ether Ships'. Never,

and I mean never, have I ever 'stated' that Constables' views of

ether ships were 'crap' - a false accusation you use as the basis

of your malicious attack, Mr France.

Despite this the evidence in Constables' book, whether he accepts

it or not, clearly favours the orgone bioform solution to UFOs. I

therefore saw no good reason why I should spend page after page

going over theories on 'nuts and bolts' spacecraft I do not even

consider to have any basis in reality. I also saw no point is

going into the work of Rudolf Steiner as my brushes with his

extensive work have left me in no desire to continue in such a

direction, especially as his teachings heavily influenced the

rise in occult Nazism prior to and during the Second World War.

I apologised if I had caused Constable any offence and promised

to keep him informed of future developments.

The letter was sent out and two days later I attended the

Cornference at Salisbury. I felt other people in the subject

should be aware of the Constable correspondence and so openly

allowed it to be read by anyone who was interested. Robert

France's `Steve Watts', i.e. Geoff Gilbertson of Glastonbury (why

play name games?), asked if he could photocopy both letters. This

I freely permitted him to do, just as I would have done anyone

that day. Indeed, since then I have openly shown the letters to

anyone interested in my work and many people have copies [I do,


I had nothing to hide so there was never any secrecy involved, Mr

France, and no sneaky permission was granted behind my back by my

partner Debbie, as you imply. Furthermore, Geoff Gilbertson

showed you the photocopies out of good faith as a researcher, and

not because he thought he had something to gloat over as in "I'd

have a read of that", he crowed with a grin on his face' and

"read it first" he teased.' I know this because I have checked

with him and found out what really happened; this pastiche

setting Mr France creates is 'pure fiction'.

Robert France masqueraded his true motives in the three letters

he wrote to me between August and November 1992. I knew he was a

close colleague of Clive Potter who wrote a rather disparaging

review of THE CIRCLEMAKERS in CW13. I also knew that he claimed

to have experienced various UFO encounters. Mr France finally

came clean about his intent in a letter dated 16 November 1992.

I smelt a big rat in the questions being posed by Mr France in

this particular letter. After the words `While not attempting to

stir-up trouble' he admitted having read a copy of Constable's

letter dated 15 August 1992. However, he did not say how he had

come to see it, but added that he had confirmed its authenticity

with Constable using the address supplied. There is no mention of

my response to Constable's letter which was given to Geoff

Gilbertson at the same time.

I got the distinct feeling that Mr France was planning to use

Constable's letter in an attack on me and my work, so made sure

that my return letter to him was lengthy, explanatory and

included copies not just of Constable's original letter by my

response as well. I like to give people the benefit of the doubt

and assume that if they have the full facts, they may re-assess



In the two-page reply to Mr France, I pointed out the situation

relating to the Constable photographs, and how I had made every

effort to obtain permission for their use before Tom Brown of

Borderland gave the final go ahead in June 1992. I also answered

each of Constable's earlier accusations. Mr France makes no

mention of any of this in his personal attack.

The same day Robert France's letter arrived, I received a second

letter from Constable dated 9 November 1992. Despite my

diplomatic response to his original letter, he made a series of

attacks on me and my work, all of which were grossly unfounded

and explained in my reply letter dated 19 November 1992.

I told him I valued criticism and comment on my work, as this was

the only way forward. However, Constable had suggested that `I

get right out of the public eye until you are well past forty

years of age' and that he had `... assured UK correspondents that

I will have no further commerce with you of any kind, and that I

regard you as a loose cannon. Please oblige me by not

communicating with me again. I wish you well, and I wish you good

luck, for you are surely going to need it.'

There the letter ended. In my reply to his words I pointed out

that many of the things he had said against THE CIRCLEMAKERS had

been said before in a review of his own book THE COSMIC PULSE OF

LIFE published in THE JOURNAL OF ORGONOMY (Vol 11, No 1, pp.

121-131), the most respected publication in the orgone field of


Written by Jerome Eden - himself a student of Dr Elsworth Baker,

Reich's direct successor - this 11-page, systematic destruction

of PULSE began by stating: `I intend to demonstrate that Trevor

James Constable has rendered a grave disservice to orgonomy by

publishing a book...' that: `Thoroughly distorts Reich's work in

a miasma of occult mystification' and `Evades and distorts the


realities of ufology in a mystical maze of occult confusion.' The

attack goes on to highlight the `characteristic inaccuracy' of

the book in quite blatant terms.

In my second letter to Constable I compared these words with

almost exactly the same words he had used in respect to THE

CIRCLEMAKERS. For instance, he said of me: `This kind of

roughshod, unscholarly treatment you accord Dr Reich and his work

is really quite

inexcusable.' While Jerome Eden said of PULSE (p. 131): `It

should be crystal clear to any rational student of orgonomy that

Trevor James Constable has performed a shameful disservice to the

work of Wilhelm Reich.'

I could go on. In other words, it would not have mattered what I

wrote, it would still have been wrong. Ultimately, I had trodden

on other people's domains and livelihoods and this was the real

crime; it seems that the cloudbusters are aimed more at each

other than they are at the sky these days.

It is also important to point out that although Constable may

have crystalised the orgone bioform solution, much of his work is

totally irrelevant to my work. What's more, his research into

orgone energy should not have given him the right to condemn

other people's views just because it dissects and revises his own

personal theories. My orgone research outside of Constable was

scant, due to a lack of available books, but I made sure that

what I did say was technically sound. I certainly did the

research, Mr France, hundreds of hours of it, just as I do with

every research project or book I take on. If any errors did creep

into the text of THE CIRCLEMAKERS Constable should have pointed

them out, not launched into a tirade of verbal abuse. This I also

put in my reply to Constable.

One of the things Constable accused me of plagiarising was this

pertinent statement made by him in 1976 (put in quotes, I must

add): `By the years 2000... hosts of young investigators in

exobiology will be in full pursuit of the critters of our

atmosphere.' Well, as I pointed out to Constable, 2000 is fast

approaching and his prediction looks like coming to pass. But, as

I put it to him: `do not expect that those who are taking this

subject forward will entirely agree with your own vision of the

future, for "exobiology" also spells the death knell for the

"nuts and bolts" UFO, I'm afraid.'

Despite his claims that only `more distortions' would come of our

ORGONE93 project, I assured Constable it would be successful;

successful in its purpose and aims. It would involve some of the

most knowledgeable and open-minded students of orgonomy in this

country today, none of whom had any problem at all with THE

CIRCLEMAKERS when they read it.

Mr France got his hands on what he thought was an incriminating

piece of evidence against Andy Collins and his psychic questing

work, so he thought he would use it in some nefarious manner.

This has really nothing to do with crop circles, or the orgone

hypothesis, it is about the misguided thoughts of one man. I

believe it is your 'ignorance', Mr France, not mine, that has

misguided you to plough your 'pathetic sense of humour' into an

attack on me which could be better described as 'rootless

flummery'. This is especially so with the misrepresented 'Steve

Watts' verifying the situation you place him in as 'pure

fiction'; so much for your 'myth-smashing'.

>From my own point of view I shall think very carefully about

being so open concerning my personal correspondence in the

future. However, I must also accept that if you are going to put

forward new ideas, then there will always be those who will try

to knock you down; not your theories, but you, personally.

If, as Mr France says, he has some useful thoughts on `the use

and manipulation of orgone and so-called "bioforms", the focusing

of this energy to retain and even retard Cancer (strange, I

thought Reich was doing this in the 1940s - AC),' but hasn't `the

capital available to produce even badly bound books' then perhaps

he should start airing these views in journals instead of


vindictive attacks on those who are actually doing the work.

Perhaps then people will start taking notice of him.

Note: 1. Constable, SKY CREATURES, p. 202.

Editorial Comments

Readers will probably have found this all a little bit

distasteful. I have to admit that after eagerly accepting Robert

France's submission to The Crop Watcher I began to regret

accepting it so willingly. As Andy Collins states, a charge of

plagiarism against any author is very serious - and one which I

hardly think is warranted by the evidence presented here. In

Andy's defence I would like to state the following:-

(1) I can vouch for the factual accuracy of all the quotations

taken from Andy Collin's letters to Trevor James Constable. I

can also vouch for the fact that Constable seems to have a

problem with anyone daring to discuss his work. His letters to

Collins were unnecessarily vitriolic and unpleasant, so much so

that I wonder whether Constable himself is not utterly barmy !

It is a nonsense for any researcher - myself included - to impose

limits on who may discuss your work and what they can say about

it. Indeed I only wish a few more people would comment on my

work and quote it in their books and magazines ! By contrast

Andy Collins' letters to Constable were admirably restrained and

proper given the

circumstances. If any apologies are due then Constable certainly

owes one to Collins.

(2) Andy Collins has explained the dilemma he faced when he

wished to use Constable's photos. I too have been faced with

similar problems chasing up people who, having published books


articles, then just disappeared. It seems to me that Andy did

everything that could naturally be asked of him. Thomas Brown's

apparent approval and claim of copyright clears Andy entirely.

(3) I too received copies of the correspondence between Collins

and Constable during late 1992. To be honest I didn't have the

time to read it when Andy Collins circulated these letters -

they were voluminous and concerned matters which I didn't really

know too much about. All they really de-monstrated to me was

that Orgone research is just as much as battlefield as UFOlogy

and "cerealogy", with everyone having a good go at each other

rather than getting down to doing some proper research ! Andy's

circulation of this material doesn't strike me as strange or

unjustified. I certainly find it interesting ! But if Robert

France is justified in his charge of plagiarism why should

Collins have circulated this material so freely ? Surely if

Collins was guilty of doing something wrong then this would have

been playing right into the hands of his enemies ?

(4) On balance I can perhaps understand Constable's annoyance

that The Circlemakers blurs his belief that some UFOs are

atmospheric creatures [a concept that really appeals to me] and

that others are ET spaceships. I know how annoying it is to see

others misrepresent what you have said so perhaps Andy should

have been a little more careful in how he portrayed Constable's

work. Of course, as Andy says, the ET spaceship interpretation

was not really relevant to his own work and he would only have

been accused of plagiarism all the more for discussing both of

Constable's personal theories if he had dwelt on this too.

(5) Ultimately writers and researchers have thin red lines they

have to tread when presenting the work of others. Even more so

when dealing with so-called paranormal phenomena, themselves

controversial and likely to attract all manner of eccentrics. I

am happy to place on record my own support for the way Andy has

dealt with this unfortunate situation and I hope this will be the

end of it. As for Orgone, well I have different views on that -

let's see what happens this summer.... PF.

Jenny Randles adds her own comments: I would just like to add a

brief statement. I have known Andy Collins a long time (around 18

years now). During his time as a UFO investigator when I co-

ordinated UFOIN, and despite his then relative youth, I was

struck by his tenacity and depth of enquiry into a case. I have

no hesitation in saying that he is one of the best UFOlogists I

have ever worked with, that his case reports from the heyday of

his field studies (1976-81) still stand as of lasting importance

and that few since he sadly moved away from UFO investigation

have matched his productivity. Since then he has been involved in

areas with no doubt more contentious pedigrees and I have to say

I have some reservations about some of them. However, everything

I have seen of Andy's work endorses my view of his skill and

doggedness as a researcher. In areas like 'questing' I always

turn to his opinions first, because I personally respect them

highly. I know little of orgone energy, do not know if Andy's

ideas are right or wrong, but found his book fascinating,

thought-provoking and (as always) delightfully written. As a

writer I really admire his literary skills. I have read all the

correspondence and in my view Andy emerges with respect,

credibility and objectivity - which is not necessarily true of

all the players in this game. JR.

PF Notes: I am not prepared to accept any further correspondence,

either private or for publication, on these matters. Readers

should contact Andy Collins, ABC Books, PO Box 189, Leigh-on-Sea,

Essex, SS9 1NF or Robert France, Flat 1, 151 Oxford Road,

Reading, Berkshire, RG1 7UY if they wish to follow-up this


1964 Crop Circle in South-East Essex

A Report by Andrew Collins

South East Essex is not known for its crop circles - aside from

the presumably man-made examples of recent years at Rettendon and

nearby North Woodham Ferrers. In February 1993, however, I have

become aware of what seems to have been a classic crop circle

appearing in the then rural district of Eastwood during the

summer of 1964. It was brought to my attention by Gwen Brooker of

Eastwood after she came across my book The Circlemakers in a

local bookshop. Gwen dropped me a line and this led to an

interview with her and her husband John on Wednesday, 24

February [1].

Our chat in the comfort of the couple's home lasted for some

hours and as it progressed I realised that both Gwen and John

were mature, articulate and sincere people not prone to flights

of fancy. Furthermore, they are also known to me through a mutual

friend, Gwen Horrigan of Leigh-on-Sea, who can confirm the

couple's integrity. Since 1962 the Brookers have lived in

Rayleigh Road, Eastwood. Today it is a busy main road linking

the town of Rayleigh with the A127 arterial road at Kent Elms

Corner, but in 1964 it was still a pleasant country lane bordered

by avenues of trees and looking out across cultivated fields

belonging to nearby

Cockethurst Farm.

Each morning and evening Gwen or her husband would walk their

young dog - a cocker spaniel named 'Sally' - along the side of

the fields lying beyond Rayleigh Road and nearby Snakes Lane,

both of which contained only a handful of scattered houses and

cottages. Some 300 yards along Snakes Lane was Cockethurst Manor,

a late Tudor house surrounded by trees and owned by three elderly

sisters who employed the services of a farm manager.

One clear morning in late July 1964 Gwen took the dog for its

usual walk. After entering Snakes Lane she left the road and

strolled along the eastern edge of a field containing near-ripe

wheat (and no tractor tram-lines). On reaching the bottom of the

field she came to a small, fast-running brook, beyond which was a

further field of ripe wheat. Here Gwen turned west to follow the

field's northern edge. Some 150 yards further on, as she drew

level with an old oak tree on the opposite side of the brook, her

eyes picked out a large circular area of flattened wheat on her

left-hand side, estimated at around 40 feet in diameter (OSGR TQ

85008863). It was symmetrically perfect and swirled in an anti-

clockwise direction. Gwen recalls it was located some ten feet

beyond the edge of the field and there seemed to be no visible

sign of entry from the footpath. Furthermore, she was convinced

it had not been there the previous evening when she and her

husband had last walked the dog, meaning it must have appeared


Her gaze at this extraordinary sight was broken by the sound of

her dog barking loudly. Glancing down she saw it was looking

directly at the crop circle, its shackles raised, as if agitated


something unseen among the corn.

The dog continued its incessant barking for some minutes and

although nothing could be seen, its peculiar reaction was one of

the factors that convinced Gwen that she should not enter the

circle. She also decided that stepping through the corn would

only result in further damage to the crop, so instead Gwen pulled

the dog away and continued her brisk walk. Saucer Nest

On arrival home Gwen informed her husband of the flattened circle

of corn. He confirmed it had not been present when they had both

walked the same footpath the previous evening and mulling over

the possibilities, Gwen suggested that the crop circle might be

the result of a 'saucer' coming down. Such an idea was, of

course, a wild stab in the dark, particularly as there has been

no reports of UFO activity either in the area or in the local

newspapers (see below). Gwen was herself a believer, however, as

a school-friend of hers had encountered some form of unidentified

object in

Southchurch Hall Park, some five miles away, during the


Unconvinced of the 'flying saucer' theory, John accompanied Gwen

back to the crop circle that same evening. Once again the dog was

in tow, although this time the animal did not respond to its

proximity. John forced an entry into the area of flattened corn

and, despite his memory being a little hazy, he seems to recall

that the nearer he got to the centre the more the flattened wheat

appeared to be unduly 'bleached', as if the stalks' moisture had

been 'evaporated by heat'. Indeed, John feels that the actual

centre was totally devoid of any stalks, and remarked on the fact

that the earth appeared to have been 'scorched', as if 'blasted'

from the middle outwards. He too confirmed that there had been no

sign of any human entry from the footpath running alongside the

brook and so concluded that he was probably the first to enter

the circle. John became totally flummoxed by its presence, having

never seen anything like it before.

During the interview John pointed out that in 1964 there was

simply no interest in the subject of UFOs. What's more, the

location in question was fairly remote and, to the best of his

knowledge, was only frequented by people out walking their dogs.

For this reason he could see no reason why any local youths

should want to create such a thing.

After leaving the circle the Brookers returned home, perplexed by

their discovery. Gwen did telephone a few friends to inform them

of the circle's presence, but none seemed intrigued enough to

want to visit the site. One of these friends, a woman named

Janet Phipps, told me she recalled Gwen ringing her about the

'saucer' nest and was easily able to work out the year in


The Locale

The wheat field where the crop circle appeared in 1964 was one of

the many cultivated each year by Cockethurst Farm. The whole area

was entirely flat with no hills within at least three miles of

this location: it is also devoid of any known ancient sites.

Curiously enough, Gwen recalls that 1964 was the last time the


containing the circle was used for wheat crop. The following year

it was left fallow and within two years it had been sold to the

local council. It is now a football field attached to the nearby

Eastwood Schools, situated opposite Gwen and John's home in

Rayleigh Road.

During my interview we adjourned to the playing field at the

centre of the mystery and here Gwen pointed out the position

where she came across the circle in 1964. Interesting features

that should be noted is the proximity of running water within 10

to 15 feet of the crop circle (which Gwen intuitively feels is

important in some way) and the large oak tree on the opposite

side of the brook. Some 150 yards south of the position are east-

west running electricity cables strung between low pylons.

Unfortunately Gwen cannot recall whether these were present in

1964. However, they are certainly present on the OS map for

1968-69, meaning they were very possibly in position four years


Gwen has spoken of ghost stories attached to various buildings in

the fields around Eastwood, but none of these lie within half a

mile of where the crop circle appeared, so cannot be associated

with its presence. There was also talk of a witches' coven

setting up in a nearby building, but this was finally pin-downed

to the late 1960s, early 1970s; not earlier.

The only other curious fact concerns Gypsies who would come from

all over Britain to this area during the months of June/July each

year. Here they would take part in an impromptu music festival

before going their own ways again. However, their rallying point

was close to the Woodcutters Arms public house in Leigh-on-Sea,

which is more than a mile away from where the crop circle

appeared, so I see no justification for linking them with its


Animal Reaction

It seems reasonable to suggest that Gwen Brooker's dog may well

have reacted to something unseen inside the crop circle, a

feature already common to crop circle lore. A prime example is

Colin Andrew's account of his family dog's violent reaction to

its approach to the Kimpton ring on 29 June 1987 [2]. Essex UFO

investigator Ron West claims that after the appearance of the

1989 single circle at Littly Green in mid-Essex, the nearby

farmer's dog barked incessantly for the entire three weeks it was

present [3]. What's more, whenever the animal escaped from the

garden it would race across to the circle and begin digging at

its centre.

In Chapter 10 of The Circlemakers I suggest that such responses

are compatible with the idea that animals can respond to

inexplicable ultrasound emissions. Similar reactions have been

noted at ancient sites where anomalous ultrasound emissions have

been recorded.

With the Littly Green case in mind, it is important to remember

that dogs respond to dog whistles not because they like the sound

they produce, but because they want to seek out the source of the

noise; animals will often jump up in an attempt to snatch the

whistle from their owner's hand if the sound is continued.

Ultrasound monitoring has been included in the ORGONE93 project.


The 1964 crop circle lies close to an east-west running brook and

consultation with a local geological map shows some potentially

interesting features about this location [4]. The brook at this

point marks the juncture of five separate geological stratas;

these being alluvium, brickearth, loam (river brickearth), London

Clay, sand and gravel. Quite what this means I cannot say but it

may have some bearing on the porosity of the sub-surface levels

deemed by some to have a relationship with the appearance of crop

circles [5].

Gwen Brooker informs me that the water tables beneath the Kent

Elms area of Eastwood are very unstable and that when a bridge

was constructed across the A127 arterial road, many local houses

became flooded owing to the displacement of sub-surface water.

Sociological Climate and UFO Reports

1964 is important in crop circle terms as it was the year before

the sudden growth in popularity of the UFO phenomenon, following

the rise of interest in the Wiltshire town of Warminster. From

Christmas Day 1964 onwards for some years there was a steady

increase in alleged UFO activity reflected in media interest

during this very same period. It climaxed with two national UFO

'flaps', one in 1967 and the other in 1973. Both years produced

record amounts of reported sightings as can be determined from

the many pulp paperbacks that appeared on the subject during the

early to mid 1970s. Therefore, if the Eastwood circle had

appeared, say, after 1964 then it might be suggested that it was

the result of local and/or national media interest in UFOs. As it

stands, the circle occurred during a period of no local reported

sightings and very few national stories on the subject of UFOs.

The archives of Southend Central Library contain press cuttings

on UFO sightings from the 1950s to the present day. The earliest

of these was clearly a fireball mistakenly identified as a

'flying saucer' in a news-story printed in the Southend Standard

of 3 December 1953 and entitled 'Flying Saucer or Shooting

Star?'. There were no more reported sightings in the local media

until 16 March 1966 when the Southend Standard ran a news-story

entitled 'Mystery in the night sky'. It concerned a 'deep,

pulsating glow of orange in the shape of a parachute' watched for

what appears to have been some time by a Mr William Dowler as he

drove along the A127 arterial road towards Southend during the

late evening of Thursday, 10 March. 'It was moving about in the

sky as though trying to study the ground', said Mr Dowler. 'As I

passed Kent Elm(s) traffic lights it suddenly went out'. Kent

Elms Corner, Eastwood, is no more than 300-400 yards from the

position of the 1964 Snakes Lane crop circle. The news-piece

claimed that Mr Dowler and 'several other car drivers' and a

Police motor-cyclist 'slowed to watch' the aerial anomaly.

Intriguingly enough the next known sighting, reported in the

Southend Standard of 2 November 1967, also featured the Kent Elms

Corner. A Mr Edward Rouse of Hullbridge watched 'a huge object

with flashing lights hovering above trees at Kent Elms Corner,

Eastwood' during the evening of Saturday, 29 October. He too was

driving along the busy A127 arterial road towards Southend when

he spotted about '500 yards' away 'a ring of fluorescent light'

that dipped below the tree-line at one point before returning as

'a red, flashing light'. He had earlier witnessed what he

believed was either the same or a similar object in nearby


Confirming my above statement about the interest in UFOs

spreading only after the advent of the Warminster phenomenon of

1965 onwards, the news-story claimed: 'This is the first report

of an

unidentified flying object in the Southend area since last week's

spate of sightings in the south of England'. It doesn't say where

in the South of England, but there is a good probability it was a

reference to Warminster. There were no further reported sightings

in south-east Essex until 1971.

Although I cannot vouch for the authenticity of either report, I

find it intriguing that the only two sightings recorded in the

Southend area during the 1960s occurred within a few hundred

yards of the 1964 Snakes Lane crop circle. I can also confirm

that no mention of 'flying saucers' was made at all in the

Southend Standard between May and September 1964, virtually

eliminating a motive for the creation of a 'saucer nest' by local

youths during this same period of time. Fortean Diary

My own research has shown crop circles to be merely part of a

much larger phenomenon connected with both time and space,

reflected in other unusual events and incidents of either a human

or meteorological nature. Such peculiar anomalies and their

association with the paranormal are known as fortean phenomena

(after Charles Fort, their first chronicler).

With this in mind I scanned through all editions of the Southend

Standard, south-east Essex's only newspaper in 1964, looking for

seemingly-unconnected events that might have some bearing on the

presence of the Snakes Lane crop circle.

>From the beginning of June to the end of September the following

incidents caught my attention:

- Saturday, 18.7.64. At the height of a heavy storm on the

morning concerned police at Ghyllgrove, Basildon (5 miles from

Eastwood), watched 'a huge bowl (ball ?) of fire' run down the

northern side of Brooke House. A tree was also reported to have

been struck in nearby Pagel Mead [6].

- Saturday, 18.7.64. Just hours after the violent storm a fire

mysteriously destroyed the 1820 church of St Gabriel in Pitsea (4

miles from Eastwood). Police were at a loss to explain how the

fire started [7].

- Thursday, 20.8.64. Around 3pm a freak whirlwind came off the

Thames Estuary and struck the home of Mr and Mrs Ronald Sunshine

of Atherstone Road, Canvey Island (4 miles from Eastwood). It was

described as 'a swirling funnel of air' and was accompanied by a

noise likened to 'a jet aeroplane ... going to land'. It vanished

as quickly as it appeared leaving wide-spread damage to the house


- Saturday, 22.8.64. Pitsea and Vange were plunged into darkness

for nearly an hour after the electricity supply mysteriously

failed. 'Something happened to our 35,000 volt system' a

spokesman said [9].

- Sunday, 23.8.64. Around 9.30pm an unnamed elderly woman in

Rayleigh heard 'four sharp raps' on the front door of her

cottage. On peering through the window she saw a hooded figure

staring up at her from the base of the steps, described as 'a

tall man dressed in black ... wearing a dark hood'. The dog

instantly reacted by jumping up at the window while a 'man

friend' ran out into the street, only to find that the figure had

vanished from sight.

The woman told the Standard that after the door-step intruder had

disappeared her 'daughter sat in a chair as if she was

paralysed'. She had no idea who the hooded man might have been

and said that no one bore a grudge against either her or her

family [10].

Rayleigh is no more than 3 miles from Eastwood. I suspect a

logical explanation to this extraordinary incident, but one is

tempted to think of the Grim reaper sketch in Monty Python's film

'The Meaning of Life' !

Whether any of these quite separate incidents were related to the

1964 crop circle might never be known as we have no actual date

of occurrence. However, they were well worth recording, anyway.


I have found no likelihood of the Eastwood circle being of man-

made construction, although the possibility of a hoax can never

be ruled out. I am also drumming up interest in the local media

in the hope that I can draw out others who either saw the crop

circle or know something of its manufacture. Until such times as

any further information comes to light, this particular example

must remain a mystery, for which reason it is unquestionably an

important addition to our gradually-expanding data-bank of

pre-1980 British circles.


1. A tape recording was made of the interview. Full details of

the witnesses' address and details are on file. 2. Collins, A.

The Circlemakers, ABC Books, Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, 1992, pp

94-95. 3. West, R., Essex UFO Research Group, 1989.

4. See Geological Sheets 258/259, Southend and Foulness, HMSO. 5.

Grist, B. The Cerealogist, No. 5, 'The Aquifer Attractor', pages

18-19. 6. Southend Standard, 22.7.64, page 16, Basildon slip-

page, 7. Ibid., as above.

8. Ibid., 26.8.64, page 32, Canvey-Rayleigh slip page.

9. Ibid., 26.8.64, page 18, Basildon slip-page.

10. Ibid., 26.8.64, page 32, Canvey-Rayleigh slip-page.

Editorial Notes

Many thanks to Andy Collins for allowing us to reproduce this

previously unreported case - yet another articulate recollection

of a crop circle from the pre Doug and Dave era - and yet another

case which just doesn't exist if you believe the claims of the

official skeptics movement. Yet again we have a historical case

which features just a small single circle about 40 feet (13

metres) across. Now I do have one or two doubts here, eg the

circle was very close to the edge of the field, and the reaction

of the dog could have been because someone was crouched down

inside the circle. Furthermore we have the possible presence of

electricity transmission lines - a feature we have repeatedly

noted at known hoax sites because hoaxers believe that UFOs are

supposed to hover close to transmission lines to steal

electricity. And finally there is this alleged gypsy

association - perhaps Gypsies were involved in circle-making

thirty years before the "travellers" began their antics in

deepest Wiltshire ? And although Andy stresses that there was

little media interest in UFOs in 1964 the Charlton crater episode

happened only 12 months before - a UFO event which made many

national newspapers throughout most of the previous summer. Could

it be that some UFO hoaxers decided to create "proof" that the

spaceships had landed - just as the United Bureau of

Investigation did 25 years later in Wiltshire ?

Of course now that there are so many groups of hoaxers on the

loose it is very easy to become a great sceptic. Really this is

just idle speculation on my part, we may never know if this was a

man-made hoax or something else. The evidence is here, it is up

to you dear reader to decide ! Thanks again to Andy.

Book Review

Dowsing, New Light on an Ancient Art

by Tom Williamson

(Robert Hale Ltd, Hardback Edition, 219 pages,

15 b&w photos, numerous illustrations)

Readers will know that in CW7 Jenny Randles and myself withdrew

our support for the concept that "genuine" crop circles have some

kind of residual field energy which can be successfully dowsed.

This followed Busty Taylor's unfortunate experience on the

Channel 4 "Equinox" programme when he successfully dowsed the

Wessex Skeptics' hoax at Clench Common. Oh dear ! What a pity

this book didn't come out when Doug and Dave were hitting the

headlines, perhaps then we wouldn't have been quite so dismissive

of Taylor's failure !

This is really the best book I've read about an anomaly for some

time. Williamson has spent all his life studying dowsing - a

skill (??) his father used extensively throughout East Africa to

earn a living - and Williamson is well qualified to evaluate the

dowsing literature, having studied geology at Oxford and then

working at the Science Museum specializing in climatology and the

history of medicine. Although Williamson is a proponent of

dowsing he doesn't let his scientific scepticism cloud his

thinking - frequently dismissing the claims of researchers whose

work could be used to support the concept of dowsing but whose

public statements are less than scientific. The great strength of

this book is its extensive presentation of case histories and its

demonstration of the scientific method at its best. I well

recall my astonishment at the Wessex Skeptics' vehemently

outright hostility to dowsing -"the negative literature totally

outweighs the positive results" and "there have been no

successful double-blind experiments" - well not any more they

aren't !

Williamson begins with a fascinating tour through the history of

dowsing, beginning in the mines of Northern Germany in the

sixteenth century but spreading throughout Europe, a practice

that - like many modern-day scientific anomalies - was soon

labelled by the authorities as an anti-scientific actitivity that

led to imprisonment and even death for some of its early

proponents. This historical section is important for it shows

how Dowsing - like many scientific anomalies - was marginalised

by science because of the fear that the mere concept of invisible

earth energies evoked. Of course, Science itself is a power

system, so this negative response was all too predictable.

Nowhere is this more ably demonstrated that in Chapter 3, which

examines the alleged link between radon, cancer and dowsing.

Williamson demonstrates how the concept of dowsable "earth rays"

was hijacked by the more esoteric dowsers and used by scientists

to dismiss the whole subject. The result was fifty years of

scientific ignorance and stagnation. Now where have I heard that

kind of story before ?

It is important to distinguish between different claimed effects.

In Chapter 4 Williamson discusses archaeological dowsing whilst

Chapter 5 summarises the latest scientific research into the

effect. Williamson blasts the skeptics with an impressive

documentation of double-blind experiments where the best dowsers

scored remarkably high results that statistically would only

occur very very rarely by statistical chance alone. Here

Williamson is at his best, debating the strengths and weaknesses

of different trials, emphasising the importance of removing all

visual cues and explaining how best to interpret complex

statistical results. I was particularly impressed with his

discussion of the Utah State University tests and the "waggon"

tests conducted by the Munich group of scientists (pages 77-85).

Chapters 7 to 10 examine a variety of possible mechanisms for the

Dowsing Effect - eg. infrasonic vibrations from within the

earth's crust, electromagnetism, fault zones, and even UFOs

feature in this fascinating review of the literature.

Part II of the book extends Williamson's search for the answer

to the Dowsing Effect with a review of many subjects well known

to UFOlogists - ionisation of the air, earthquake lights,

piezoelectrical effects, and that old favourite earthlights.

They're all here. Unfortunately so are crop circles - and

although there is an important first hand account of the 1963

Charlton Crater (pages 164-6) some of the evidence in this

chapter is now a little redundant. Sadly Williamson accepted our

claims that most circles were not man-made and goes on to

consider two possibilities - that crop circle dowsers are simply

responding to visual cues -the crop circles themselves - or that

they are detecting a residual energy field. This rather spoils

his otherwise scholarly approach. His final chapter attempts to

draw together all the disparate fields of study discussed

throughout his book in a kind of grand unifying theory (which

includes Meaden's ideas about stone circles and their

relationship with crop circle vortices). For my liking this is a

little over-ambitious but nevertheless this is a fine book which

I recommend to anyone who adopts an open mind towards anomalies.


Ted Phillips' Physical Trace Catalogue

Part 2 (Continued from issue 16)

Case 124, Nov 16, 1958. SWEDEN, Upland. Dusk.

Two men found their car stopping and lights going out when they

were three miles from Vaddo, their destination. In the next

moment they caught sight of a shining object, about 17 yards long

and 8-9 yards high, which swooped down from their right and

landed about 60 yards away. It was circular and blue, with a

shining yellow rim which lit up a circular area of 90-100 yards.

After about three minutes on the ground, the object begun to

move, then vanished into the air. After checking their car, which

now started easily, the men drove to the spot where the "light"

had been. They noticed a heaviness and "closeness" of the air,

and saw that the grass was either pressed down or blown down .

When they lighted the area with a flashlight, they discovered a

bright, flat, thin "stone", which felt warm to their hands.


[This case was featured on page 159 of "Crop Circles, A Mystery

Solved" as a potential plasma-vortex case. Note the reference to

the unusual atmospheric sensations. This too is a clue to the

natural origin of the effect being described. We suggest that the

failure of the car engine is due to intense ionisation of the

air. PF]

Case 126, December 20th, 1958. FRANCE, Clermont-Ferrand. 1600


A disc 70 foot in diameter was observed and caused damage to the

ground. (VALLEE III)

Case 127, December 28th, 1958. IRELAND, County Antrim.

Joseph Bennett, a farmer, heard a strange noise and he looked up

and saw a dark, round object 7 feet in diameter about 20 foot

above the ground. It travelled NW and went above a row of trees.

A 40 foot high oak tree, 2 foot in diameter was knocked to the

ground, 8 foot above the surface. (VALLEE III)

Case 128, 1959. U.S.A., Turner, ME.

A woman was in her driveway when she heard a humming sound. She

glanced across the road and saw strange lights flying low over a

field about 1,000 foot away. The object [sic] hovered and

descended to the ground; the lights went out. Another object

[sic] crossed the field and hovered above the landed UFO. The

objects were disk-shaped with blue lights around a central rim.

The landed object ascended and the two flew away at high speed. A

small area of singed grass was found the next morning. (John

Fuller, "Incident at Exeter")

[It is interesting to compare the behaviour and appearance of

these UFOs with those mentioned in the Upland case - both were

disc-shaped with brilliantly lit rims, and both landed on the

ground for a minute or two. The Turner case was part of a more

complex sequence of UFO events spanning several weeks but in this

particular case the witnesses were obviously too far away to

experience any of the effects described in the Upland case. PF]

Case 129, 1959. DENMARK, Kolding. Midnight.

"Sucking marks" found in the snow. Farmer Nielsen reported a

strange light in his field. (FSR)

[OK then readers, what kind of light leaves "sucking marks" ? How

about one generated by some obscure vortex mechanism surrounded

by an electro-static field of some kind ? PF.]

Case 130, May 20th 1959. ARGENTINA, Tres Lomas.

Two hunters saw a disc-shaped object on the ground 500 feet

away. It appeared to be aluminium and about 9 foot high with a

dome. Grass was flattened. (VALLEE III)

[An intriguing case. How much of the description is objectively

reported and how much is conditioned by witnesses cultural

stereotype of what they are supposed to be seeing ?]

Case 131, July 23rd, 1959. NEW ZEALAND, Piri Piri.

Ring shaped trace. (UFOIC).

Case 686, August 1959. U.S.S.R., Georgia.

In the vicinity of an unnamed village in Georgia, a UFO was said

to have exploded, the event being witnessed by a 43-year-old

labourer Vasily Dubischev. There were no remains apart from one

strangely charred piece. A certain Dr. Fyodor Petrov was said to

have claimed it was not made of carbon but silicon. (UFOs from

behind the Iron Curtain, page 282, quoting Robert Charroux, "Le

Livre Des Mondes Oubliques", Paris 1971).

[If memory serves me correctly this case was later admitted to be

a hoax. PF]

Case 132, August 12th, 1959. SPAIN, Brion.

A 60-year-old farmer saw an egg-shaped object come down at high

speed and land in a field near a river. It took off vertically,

with an engine noise, not similar to a helicopter. Traces

[found]. (VALLEE III)

Case 133, September 7th, 1959. WALLINGFORD, KY. 0230 Hrs.

Disc shaped object hovered near the ground, took off vertically,

moved away horizontally. A 13 foot stained ring was found. A

spectro-analysis of the soil of the ring shows the sample

contained chromium, iron and manganese not normally found in the

clay soil of the area. (The UFO Investigator, March 1960).

[If this case can be counted as a crop circle then it was one I

didn't know about. We'll certainly try to track down more

information about it and report back. PF.]

Case 134s, October 1959. SWEDEN, Mariannelund. 1855 Hrs.

The electrical power in the three witnesses' houses failed; when

they ran outside they saw a blinding white light, it stopped and

hovered. The object started to move, slowly descended and turned

to the right, hitting and smashing a portion of a maple tree (top

section), it then descended towards the ground. The witness was

10 foot from it. Through a large window he could see two

occupants, with large eyes; the heads were high-crowned. The

occupants were small in size. The object was oval, about 12 feet

long and 8 feet high. It was found that a gray-white substance

covered power lines. The witness was Gideon Johansson, his wife

and his son. (FSR, 11:70) .

[PF. OK, this one has me gazumped. ]

Case 736, 1960. ROMANIA, Baciu.

Imprints in a triangle, 3.2m x 2.4m x 2.4m, burnt grass.


Case 135p, April 12th, 1960. U.S.A., Lacamp, LA. 2100 Hrs.

A witness reported a disc, red in colour, flying swiftly from the

south. It touched the ground about 1,000 feet away with a loud

explosion heard by many people. A flame was seen. It bounced in

an easterly direction, ascended, turned west and disappeared. The

ground was scarred in nine places and a substance like metallic

paint was found. (Science & Mechanics)

Case 136, May 14th, 1960. BRAZIL, Paracura. 0400 Hrs,

A witness saw two landed discs on a beach, and several small,

pale-looking humanlike entities standing near them. They beckoned

to the witness, who turned and fled in fright. Returning later

with other men he found marks in the sand where the discs had

rested. (APRO).

[I find this case dubious in the extreme. Don't you ? PF]

Case 137, May 24th, 1960. VENEZUELA, Ocumare del Tuy.

Diamond-shaped scorched marks found. (NICAP)

Case 138, June 10th, 1960. ENGLAND, Evenlode.

Two circles [ie rings, PF], one inside the other, were discovered

by Bill Edwards. The outer circle [ring, PF] is 23 foot across.

Smaller ring 16 foot across, width 1.5 inches. (FSR 10:60)

[This is the classic Evenlode case discussed in all our

published work. PF.]

Case 139, July 22nd, 1960. U.S.A., Martin, TN/ 2200 Hrs.

Shirley Sisk, aged 13, saw a hovering disc with a small rudder-

like attachment on one side. Large oily circles with a black

substance were found. (Saucers, Space & Science, Canada)

Case 140, August 1960. ARGENTINA, 1030 Hrs.

Four Italian engineers saw a luminous disc land or hover close to

the ground. It was 1,000 feet away. It then ascended and a

circular area of grass 90 foot in diameter was found. (FSR)

Case 149, 1962. CANADA, Wooler, Ontario.

25 foot circle was found, formed by an 18 inch ring. No other

details. (H.H. McKay)

[PF Here's another historical case which could be a fairy ring

or a crop circle. I'll try and find out as much as possible for a

future article.]

Case 150, 1962. U.S.A., Minot, ND.

A witness was driving from Grand Forks to Minot when an object

flew across in front of her car and followed it. The next day a

bowl-shaped imprint in which all the grass was crushed was found.

Three indentations were clearly marked within the depressed area.

Plants and grass had radiation of the subterranean roots. (Data-


Case 151, 1962. ARGENTINA, Bahia Blanca.

Three truck drivers saw a luminous object ahead of them. It

remained on the ground for one minute. Where the object had been

they found a wet, greyish substance. (FSR 10:62)

Case 152, May 12th, 1962. ARGENTINA, Pampa Province. 0410 Hrs.

V. and G. Tomasini and H. Zenobi saw an object on the ground 350

feet away. It looked like a railroad car and was illuminated. As

they approached it, the object ascended, crossed low over the

road, rose with a flame and separated into two sections that flew

away in separate directions. A humming noise was heard. It was

seen on the ground for one minute. A circle was burned, insects

were carbonized and the ground was petrified. (VALLEE III)

[Could the humming noise been due to an electro-static field ?

The "circle" could have been caused by considerable air pressure

inside the vortex. Or do you have any better ideas ? PF.]

That's all for now. Readers may be interested to learn that

Keith Basterfield and Bill Chalker have sent me a draft of "A

Catalogue of Australian Physical Ground Effect Cases", which

contains 136 cases of Unusual Ground Markings dating back to

1927. We will review this in a future issue when it has been

fully published.

A Looney A Look

by Chris Rutkowski,

North American Institute for Crop Circle Research

[PF A slightly longer version of this article was first published

in International UFO Reporter, September/October 1992, Vol 17,

no 5]

I had just settled into bed, and was going to forego watching the

late news. I was bone-tired; the kind of tired only a parent with

an eight-month-old baby can appreciate. It was about 10:30 PM,

Sunday, August 16, 1992.

The phone chirped (telephones don't "ring" any more). It was Roy

Bauer, an associate and good friend who has accompanied me on

many an investigation, and vice versa. He told me that a teaser

for the news had a story about new crop circles in Manitoba.

Film at Eleven. Several days earlier, he and I had gone with

another NAICCR associate to Friedensruch, Manitoba, where we

investigated the claims of a crop "triangle" in a pasture

surrounded by an electric fence. We had concluded that the

Unexplained Ground Marking (UGM) there had been caused by cattle

accidentally herded within the fenced area. Still earlier in the

summer, various NAICCR reps had visited other crop formations

closer to Winnipeg, which were heralded by their discoverers and

the media as being

communications from the space aliens. As soon as we had seen

them, we knew they were lodging, a common field effect created by

a combination of wind, rain, and weak plant stems.

But the story on the news that night spoke of actual formations;

circles with arrows and rings. Now these were more unusual, and

sounded more like their better-known British cousins.

NAICCR (North American Institute for Crop Circle Research) was

formed as a sister group of UFOROM (Ufology Research of

Manitoba) in 1990, in response to requests from British

cerealogists wanting information about crop circles in North

America. We had realized that, although there were a number of

people in North America who were independently investigating crop

circles, there was no comprehensive gathering of data underway.

Furthermore, like most UFO or Fortean groups, UFOROM members had

been studying crop circles for decades, long before they were

popularized in Britain. Ted Phillips' catalogue of physical

traces [associated with UFOs] listed many such swirled circles,

along with other traces, going back before the turn of the

century. These UGMs had been cropping up (pardon the pun) from

time to time in North America, sometimes in association with an

associated UFO sighting.

So, NAICCR began investigating Canadian crop circles and

soliciting information on American cases from other investigators

and groups. (The phrase "pulling teeth" comes to mind). With the

co-operation of several researchers, NAICCR has published reports

and an annual review of North American UGMs, a feat still lacking

on the British scene. (Sure, they publish lots of pretty

pictures, but what about the data?). But I digress...

After Roy called me, I turned on the TV and flipped channels

until I found a provincial newscast. Sure enough, there was a

short blurb about crop circles near a town named Strathblair. I

thought hard about where that was in relation to Winnipeg. I had

a funny feeling I was going to be driving a long, long way.

There was little more that could be done that night, so I jotted

down a few notes, and turned in. Again.

The next morning, I drove to work early, fearing that a barrage

of phone messages from the media would await me. On the way in, I

heard a brief clip of a radio interview with a woman who had

observed a UFO at the circle sites. This was a rarity in

cerealogy, and was a supporting datum for the ETH [extra-


hypothesis] with regards to crop circle creation. Colin

Andrews would be pleased, I mused.

There were surprisingly few media calls at work, and I dealt with

them quickly. Curiously, the local TV networks were not really

interested in the new cases. I had hoped to get their help in

obtaining aerial videos of the formations, as NAICCR hardly has

enough material for gas, let alone airplane rental. But it turned

out the media were gun-shy; they had been "burned" by their

coverage of the previous non-events, and were not going to do

anything further on the story. This was OK, since it would mean

we could carry out an investigation without the cameras following

us around, as in other years.

I phoned the editor of the Strathclair area newspaper, Greg

Nesbitt, and got more details about the cases. There were said to

be seven separate sites, plus a handful of UFO sightings. Since

they had been found, at least two or three hundred people had

visited the formations. Well, so much for finding any useful

clues. But, because of the unique shapes involved, we still felt

it was worth a look. I told Greg that a NAICCR team would be out

the next day.

On Tuesday morning at around 8:00 AM, Roy Bauer, Guy Westcott and

I left Winnipeg for Strathclair. The town is about 275 kilometers

northwest of Winnipeg, and it took us exactly four hours to reach

the area. We had been told that one of the sites was clearly

visible from the highway, but we didn't notice it on our way in.

We arrived in the town of Shoal Lake, where we were to meet Greg,

at around noon.

Greg was going to be our guide, but we had an hour to kill before

he was ready to lead us out. So, being hard-working

investigators, we went to the local bar. During lunch, we made

casual enquiries about the crop circles. Everyone had at least

heard of them, and some people admitted visiting the sites. We

went over to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police headquarters and

inquired if they had received any official reports. The

commanding officer barely contained his amusement with the

situation. He joked that he had the aliens in a jail cell. He did

admit, though, that they had received some calls about some

bright lights that weekend.

We met Greg around 1:00 PM in his print shop cum newspaper

office. He grabbed a tape recorder and we headed for our

vehicles. This was big news. Not only had the aliens landed, but

investigators had come all the way from the "big city" to see

them !

Greg led us back down the highway to a patch of field halfway

between Shoal Lake and Strathclair, just outside a hamlet named

Ipswich. (It was interesting how the first crop formation in the

area was at a site named for a British city). We had missed it

because from the road, the site looked just like a patch of

lodging. We had seen many such patches on the drive out, and in

fact had stopped to examine one closely.

But this wasn't lodging. Once we were led in on the well-trodden

path, the shape of the formation became quite clear. Slightly

elliptical, the site had a diameter axes of 26 and 24.5 feet. On

a northeasterly heading of 65 degrees, an arrow protruded away

from the crop circle, giving the effect of the symbol for Mars,

or "male". The wheat was about four feet tall outside the

formation, and was neatly bent and swirled counter-clockwise

inside the circle. The wheat was bent away from the circle inside

the arrow, and toward its end points. The width of the arrow

corridor was about 28 inches. While we measured, took samples and

photos, two truckloads of visitors arrived. They trampled through

the neatly-woven grain, and added to the disturbed state of the


The site was only 40 feet away from the nearest access road, and

about 100 feet from the highway. It had been found on Saturday,

August 16, 1992, by the owner of the land, and reported to the

media the following day. By that time, word had spread anyway.

Once the circle news had got out, a woman reported that she had

seen a UFO over the field on Friday evening. She had been driving

from Shoal Lake to Ipswich, and had been passing the field when

she observed a dark object with two "headlights" and a flashing

"tail-light". The UFO moved slowly over the field at an estimated

height of a telephone pole, and about 250 feet away from the

witness. After a minute or so, it moved out of sight behind some

trees. Two other people driving along the highway also glimpsed

the object before it disappeared.

After we had finished our work at the Ipswich site, Greg led us

to the next site, nearer Strathclair. This formation was visible

from the highway, situated on a slight hill so that it was

visible to eastbound travellers. It, too, was a Mars symbol. This

time, the main circle was thicker than the one at Ipswich, and

pointed on a bearing of 120 degrees, away from the highway.

Guy, Roy and I began musing about how one would go about making

such a formation. Greg made a comment about how skeptical we

seemed to be. After all, wasn't it obvious that only aliens could

have made the formation ? He related how one of the first people

on the scene had found a "dinosaur footprint" at the point of the

arrow, and how it had been suggested that the arrow could have

been made by a ramp extended from the landed, circular UFO. Of

course, the numerous visitors to the site had eradicated any sign

of the print.

I thought about the arguments which were raging on the other side

of the Atlantic, one of which was about whether or not it was

possible to hoax a crop formation. On impulse, I sat down

abruptly in the field. I was completely out of view of my

colleagues, a few feet away. "Let's try making a circle," I

offered. Greg was doubtful. No human could make such a formation,

surely ? (I told him not to call me...)

I looked at the wheat closely. It was planted in neat rows about

four inches apart. I got up and walked about thirty feet away

from the site, carefully stepping between two rows. I looked

back. There was no sign of my entry. I began walking in what I

thought was a circle, met my own path and began spiralling

inward. Roy joined me, and we performed a triticale pas de deux,

trampling the wheat in a circle twenty feet in diameter. In five

minutes, we had made a fair copy of the "real" circle. Stems

stuck up here and there where we had missed them, and we did some

touch-ups. I was

surprised to find that our effort was almost exactly circular.

Grey and Guy compared our handiwork with the "real" site, and

declared it a reasonable facsimile. ("Maybe someone could have

made it," Greg mumbled). I bent down to look at the newly-

trampled wheat, and was greatly surprised. One of the points of

contention in debates over "real" and hoaxed British circles is

that wheat stems in "real" circles are bent, not broken. When one

crushes wheat underfoot while walking in a field, it is assumed

that the wheat stems would show numerous kinks and breakage.

Virtually none of the wheat in our new crop circle was broken.

Somehow, the stems were neatly bent over in a counter-clockwise

direction, swirled into the center, and showing no evidence of

having been trodden upon.

I never intended to show that hoaxers had made the formation this

way. Indeed, I would expect that there would have been some basic

tools used instead of one's own feet. But this formation had been

made a few days after a full moon, and the wheat was tall enough

to afford cover if a car had chanced to pass on the highway ...

There were still a few other questions about the formation,

though; the hoax theory wasn't completely fleshed-out enough to


satisfaction. What was the motive ? How was it done, really ? Why

would anyone bother ? And what about the UFO sightings ?

We headed for the other sites. They were all approximately three

miles south of the main highway, along a farming road. Two were

directly across a road from one another. As we drove up, we saw

that some boys were standing in front of a formation, wielding a

hand-painted sign. As we walked over, it became readable: "A

LOONEY A LOOK". ("Looney" is a Canadian slang term for a dollar

coin, because of the image of a swimming loon on one side).

The boys turned out to be a gold mine of information. Contrary to

what we had been told earlier, this particular formation (another

arrowed circle) had appeared over a week before. The one across

the road had appeared first, a week before that. After the second

had been found, the boys had thought to make a ringlike path

around the whole formation, so that visitors could examine the

site without disturbing it. Unfortunately, their idea didn't

work, and what's more, the ring had been assumed to be part of

the original formation. The arrow from this circle pointed on a

bearing of 260 degrees. When we later plotted all the formations

on a map, we were disappointed to discover that the directions

indicated by the arrows didn't converge. Furthermore, none of the

arrows pointed toward a significant local feature such as a

native midden, burial mound, mountain or new age mystic site.

(Now, if I was going to make an elaborate hoax ...).

The fifth site was clearly lodging. However, because it was only

a mile from the two nearest formations, many people had visited

it. While there, more visitors came by, and we asked them about

other sites. We were given directions to other fields where

formations were said to have been found, but we were unable to

verify any others.

On the drive back to Winnipeg, we stopped in at a TV station in

Brandon. The news director told us of another circle site in the

area. As it was already late, we decided to ask another NAICCR

rep, Jeff Harland, to investigate. He lives in Brandon, and had

investigated some UGMs in the area a few years ago. We dropped by

his house (by some remarkable timing) exactly at dinnertime, and

found ourselves graciously invited for supper. During the meal,

we compared notes and swapped ideas about the crop circle scene.

We drew up some maps of the formations, and talked for hours

about our findings.

We learned that a TV special on British crop circles had been

aired on the Friday night that the Ipswich circle was probably

made. It could be that someone got the idea to hoax a circle from

that show, but then, two circles were found before the show was

aired. Other than that programme, there had been very little

media attention given to crop circles. There was no national or

international coverage of the North American circles during the

summer, and the media were staying away from the British

formations in droves.

We had taken both VHF and AM/FM radios in the formations. No

interference was heard. A compass was not deflected by any

magnetic anomaly. A tape recorder worked fine, and there were no

beepings or strange signals left on the tape. Animals were not

wary to enter the sites, and there was no lack of insects at the

sites. None of us felt any "bad vibes", unlike some circle

investigators at other formations. All of these effects were

checked because some

cerealogists are insistent that anomalous phenomena plague such

sites. Apart from the fact they were there, there was nothing

particularly unusual about the sites. ("Another mysterious crop

circle. Yawn".)

The wheat samples we collected will be sent to various

researchers for testing. Now that cerealogists have finally

conceded that spagyrical analysis (the "tests" which showed a

change in the "crystalline structure" of the plant cells) is

spurious and unscientific, and the supposed radionuclides found

in crop circles have been shown to be glitches in the data, the

only remaining anomalous effects associated with crop circles are

the growth studies by Dr. Levengood at the Pinelandia Biophysical

Labs. he claims that wheat from crop circles will grow more

readily than control samples. This is easy enough to check, since

we now have more seed samples. of course, these will be double-

blind tests.

Since our expedition to the Strathclare formations, we have kept

abreast of the British scene, and read with interest the reports

of investigations by the Project Argus group. North America has

only had one complex crop formation [in 1992, PF], and it was

distinctly different from the British experience. My biggest

concern with the British circle scene was the over-abundance of

formations in southern England compared with the rest of the

world. Why does Britain have so many crop circles, and why do

they look as they do ?

>From my correspondence with other researchers, between 50 and 75

per cent of all British formations are suspected to be hoaxes. I

would suggest that the actual fraction is much higher - probably

around 90 percent. Either way, there is no question that the

British data is badly contaminated. What is needed is a

comprehensive list of the British sites with indications of which

ones are likely or proven hoaxes. It seems that people are

delving into mystical philosophy and Gaiean premonitions without

first sorting out the "good" data from the "bad" data, whatever

the two sets may be. (Paul Fuller, editor of The Crop Watcher, a

British circlezine, has just reported that many "expert"

cerealogists have grudgingly begun considering the fact that

most, if not all, crop circle formations are likely hoaxes).

So far in 1992, less than two dozen North American crop circle

(rather, UGM) sites have been investigated. Despite low media

coverage and a number of hoaxers' admissions, about two hundred

sites have been found in Britain this year. What gives ? The

infamous circle hoaxers Doug and Dave probably made less than ten

formations, despite their earlier claims which were accepted

wholeheartedly by the general public. Two NAICCR investigators

caught a hoaxer here in Manitoba. Big deal. We know that crop

circles can be hoaxed, and that cerealogy "experts" cannot tell a

"real" circle from a hoaxed one. Why haven't the circles gone

away ? And a better question: Why is there still so much interest

in these peculiar UGMs ?

Cerealogy has attracted at least as many loonies as UFOlogy,

unfortunately. We seem to be looking at another sociological

phenomenon, perhaps a reaction to our confused technological

age. I'm not particularly convinced that crop circles are alien

hieroglyphics, plasma vortex traces or patches left by mating

hedgehogs. Actually, I'm more fascinated by those who think that

there is enough evidence to adhere to a certain theory.

So with that, at least until I get my next phone call, I will lay

back and reflect on all this circular reasoning. Pun intended.

(Again). Chris Rutkowski. NAICCR.

Editorial Comments

Our thanks go to Chris and his NAICCR colleagues for providing

such an important case study. Chris' superb article reinforces

the fact that all the major crop circle "experts" (myself

included) failed to fully examine the effect of mechanical

depression on cereal crop at every stage in its growth cycle. If

it can be so easy to make a convincing looking crop circle on

your very first attempt what can experienced crop circle hoaxers

do after 200 practice runs ? This central theme - that mechanical

depression actually damages the crop - was the fundamental

corner-stone that protected the crop circle myth from allegations

of hoaxing for many years. The disproving of this myth and the

exposure of numerous groups of hoaxers means that we have little

choice but to accept Chris Rutkowski's argument that the crop

circle data is heavily

contaminated by hoaxing - and by heavily contaminated I agree

with Chris' estimate that at least 95 per cent of our data is

corrupt (a bit like UFO reports). Sad words but true. Thanks

again to Chris Rutkowski and his NAICCR/UFOROM colleagues. What

Dr. Armen

Victorian Didn't Say

by Dennis Stacy, Editor, MUFON UFO Journal

[Following the publication of our Swangate Update in CW16 Dennis

Stacy replies to allegations published by Henry Azadedel, the

well known international rare orchid smuggler. PF]

To correct each and every error of fact or assump-tion that

appears in Dr. Armen Victorian's recently distributed article,

"Disinformers, Deceivers and Their Legitimate Supporters" (March

7, 1993) would probably require a small hard drive and try the

patience of anyone who bothers to read this. However, since I am

personally described therein as "a punch-drunk editor," I think

its imperative that I set a few of Mr. Victorian's more egregious

remarks straight.

To begin with, while he preaches accuracy in reporting, its a

principle that he himself fails to practice. He says, for

instance, that I coined the phrase "case of the century" to

describe the Linda Napolitano case currently under investigation

by Budd Hopkins. The first time I refer to the case is in my

coverage of the speech given by Budd Hopkins at the Albuquerque


Symposium. My article appeared in the August, 1992, issue of the

MUFON UFO Journal, pp 3-10. There are 11 subheadings in that

article, only one of which is surrounded by quotation marks: "The

Abduction Case of the Century". Here is my concluding paragraph:

"If it continues to hold up under scrutiny - and especially if

the political figure can be induced to come forward and

corroborate events - then this could indeed be the 'case of the


I understand that English is not Mr. Victorian's native language,

but he surely understands that when words are put in quotation

marks they refer to someone else's direct quote ? I didn't coin

the phrase, in other words. It sounds like a small point to make,

but there are others. And it is, after all, Mr. Victorian who is

a stickler for accuracy, isn't it ?

Next, he says that after I "faxed a ridiculous letter to Mr.

[George] Wingfield "I wrote back with the excuse that [I] was

drunk when [I] wrote the letter, therefore apologising for its

contents". Here's what I really said: "Dear George, I'd meant to

send along a follow-up fax before receiving yours of today,

mainly to apologise for the intemperate tone of my own previous

fax and remarks. Not to make excuses, but I received your

original reply late at night, and by the time I responded, quite

frankly, I was under the influence. It is, after all, that time

of year. So by the cold light of day, I again apologise for my

abrupt tone and any imperative remarks." The date of this letter

is December 12, and I asked George to forward Mr. Victorian a

copy as well.

This friendly riposte is what Mr. Victorian characterizes as my

craven "admission" of habitual drunkenness. Note, first, that I

don't apologize for the contents of my previous fax, but for its

impertinent tone. At this time faxes were being frantically

exchanged back and forth across the Atlantic, leaving and

arriving at all hours of the night and day. Note next the date. I

don't know what social circles Mr. Victorian travels in, nor do I

frankly care, but I can tell him that the Christmas season in San

Antonio is quite a festive one, with friends or family throwing a

party virtually every other night of the month right up until New

Year's Eve. I did what I thought was an honourable thing, and

admitted that I had been drinking (which wasn't the same as

saying I was drunk) and that I probably should have waited until

morning before "shooting from the hip". For this frank openness

in a personal letter intended only for myself, George and Mr.

Victorian, I now find myself thanked by having it held up in

public ridicule as "evidence" of my "punch-drunk" editing of the

MUFON UFO Journal. But I can guarantee you one thing: it'll be a

cold day in hell when Mr. Victorian apologises to anyone,

previous former colleagues included, for any of his actions,

however regrettable or


A mere ten days later, on December 22nd, Mr. Victorian offered to

sue MUFON for libel. We consulted our attorneys, and through an

intermediary he was advised to proceed full steam ahead. We are

still waiting to hear from Mr. Victorian's lawyers. I predict

we'll still be waiting well into the 21st century, because Mr.

Victorian knows that any such suit doesn't stand a snowball's

chance in hell of success.

Even so, Mr. Victorian was allowed the opportunity to reply to

the Schnabel article in the MUFON UFO Journal. And we duly

published his response in the January, 1993, issue, ridiculously

lame and inept as it was. In the same issue we also published a

response by Graham Birdsall of Quest International, editor of

"UFO Magazine". Wingfield's response followed in the February

issue. (Between bouts with the bottle, I do miraculously manage

to get some work done !).

Mr. Victorian also quotes from a letter by an unnamed "couple of

American crop circle researchers," in which Robert Irving is

described as a "psychopath ... a nutter," and one of four men

dressed in black they saw coming out of a field the night before.

As Mr. Victorian himself must almost assuredly be aware, that

letter is itself now highly suspect. It was received in England

on November 12, 1992, and was supposedly written by a Ray and

Suzie Marks, then allegedly living in Berkeley, California.

Unfortunately, and to the best of my current knowledge, no such

couple exists ! So much for Mr. Victorian's own much-vaunted

penchant for accuracy. If he knows who Ray and Suzie Marks really

are, then let him come forth, say so, and adduce evidence of

their existence. Put up or shut up.

Mr Victorian also claims to have three independent voice-stress

analyses indicating that Jim Schnabel was telling him the truth

(instead of simply putting him on) when he spoke of a conspiracy

of "sinister forces" (including Satan) aimed at disinforming the

crop circle phenomenon. Surely, then, this is physical evidence,

evidence that in the interests of accuracy Mr. Victorian should

publish and make public, instead of just referring to it on

occasion ? Bluntly, Mr. Victorian, put up or shut up.

Mr. Victorian also claims that "some of the vocabulary [Schnabel]

used is only [used] by Intelligence officers or their recruits."

His example ? Schnabel says people sometimes become "burned out"

! Apparently, Mr. Victorian is unaware that the phrase "burnt

out" has been used by almost everyone in this country at one time

or another, from football coaches to anyone caught in a dead-end

job that they don't like. It's even in the American Heritage

Dictionary of the English Language, Third Edition. Look it up,

Mr. Victorian and improve your accuracy.

Mr. Victorian also told another crop circle researcher that his

itemised telephone bill would put lie to Schnabel's version of

events. According to Schnabel, Mr. Victorian first talked to Rob

Irving. Irving then called Schnabel and played a nearly 30-minute

tape of their conversation, thus preparing Schnabel. Mr.

Victorian claimed his phone bill would prove that he called


immediately after talking to Irving, and that therefore there was

no 30-minute gap, ergo, Schnabel was caught lying. Unfortunately,

the copy of his phone bill Mr. Victorian supplied didn't match

the one kept by British Telecom ! Now, who's accurate here, and

who's lying to suit their own personal agenda ? For that matter,

what is Mr. Victorian's agenda ? Again, put up or shut up.

Over the past couple of years Mr. Victorian called me several

times to ask my opinion on this or that case or individual, or to

ask for someone's telephone number, address or some other tid-bit

of information. To the best of my ability, I freely provided the

information he sought on each and every occasion. For this open

co-operation I am now being labelled "punch-drunk" and presumably

the active agent of some heinous intelligence conspiracy in

league with the Devil yet. (And if any good intelligence agency

worth its salt - satanic or otherwise - would hire punch-drunk

editors in the first place).

The fact of the matter is that Mr. Victorian knows no shame. And

anyone in this field who continues to co-operate with him on a

personal level can't say they weren't forewarned when the worm

finally turns, as it almost assuredly will. You can learn from my

experiences, or you can learn from your own. For your help in Mr.

Victorian's personal quest - whatever it is - you can expect to

eventually be repaid in calumny and threats of legal action

should you ever dare deviate from his paranoid world view.

Come to think of it, maybe I WAS punch-drunk. Otherwise, why

would I have bothered giving Dr. Victorian the time of day, let

alone my own personal trust and confidence ? Fortunately, now

that I've sobered up, I've had a complete change of heart.

Dennis Stacy.

PF: This article was first published on the "MUFONET" BBS


Swangate Update 2

Sorry folks but I've held this over to issue 18 due to lack of


Jim Schnabel at the Essex CCCS

on 28th May 1993

An Exclusive Report by Andrew Collins

Fresh from the release of his controversial new book Round in

Circles, Jim Schnabel took time out to answer questions at a

meeting of the Essex Crop Circle Group on Thursday, 28th May.

In his book Jim is careful on words concerning the various crop

formations he is suspected of hoaxing during the 1992 summer

season, but not so tonight. He freely admitted to single-handedly

creating the so-called `charm bracelet' pictogram that appeared

within spitting distance of the Waggon and Horses public house at

Beckhampton in August last year.

He openly spoke of dumping his circle-making equipment at Avebury

Trusloe before making his way across the open fields under the

light of the full moon and reaching his virgin canvas of ripe

wheat. The water trough had not been anticipated, he said, and at

first he had intended avoiding it completely. However, after

marking out the outer ring he stumbled over it again, so decided

to incorporate the wretched thing into his design. It acted as a

good sighting point, but was not geometrically perfect in its

positioning within the formation.

Apparently, the idea had been to construct a new variation of the

crop pictogram with the different components linked in a wheel,

instead of the more usual line of interconnected features. The

antlers, he pointed out, were meant to have been a continuation

of the fractal idea first employed in the Ickleton Mandelbrot Set

of the previous year. He claimed the blueprint for the design had

first been scribbled down on paper before being sealed in an

envelope and sent to himself; a second, condensed version being

concealed beneath the postage stamp. This, I'm sure, he will

produce to order if requested.

Jim's disclosure concerning this quite unique formation was most

extraordinary, particularly as it will be more difficult

convincing the farmer concerned that fallen crop can, as he

claims in his book, be picked up with the blades of a harvester

if lowered sufficiently.

As the evening wore on Montague Keen, having read Jim's book from

cover to cover, fired the confident young American with question

after question concerning his accusations regarding the CCCS and

the purpose of his circle-making activities. For instance, was

Jim's book really inferring that the CCCS was a religious

organisation masquerading as a scientific body with no fixed

views on the phenomenon? No, was the obvious answer, although Jim

pointed out that it did contain certain individuals whose

religious views probably outshone the scientific commitment of

the CCCS. What's more, there were indications, Jim said, of

possible links between key members of the CCCS and the appearance

of hoaxed formations. On a number of occasions there had been

formations appearing following private predictions from within

the CCCS, indicating that the perpetrators may actually belong to

the organisation.

In his usual calm manner Montague pointed out that Jim and his

colleagues had seriously diluted the results of the 1992 Project

Argus experiments through his clandestine activities. Yet despite

this set back, various low-level EM changes had been recorded in

certain formations tested by the Argus team as can be seen in the

125-page report of the project. With a wry smile on his face, Jim

was curious to know which formations had produced these effects !

On the Doug and Dave front Jim spoke of the simple though

effective techniques the two sexagenarians had employed to

construct their own circles and formations. For instance, for a

quintuplet set one would stand in the centre of a finished circle

with a wooden cross shaped device, while the other would take out

a line and carefully move through the crop in a wide ring. When

aligned with one of the four equal angles of the cross a red

light would signal the spot where the next satellite should be

swirled. Jim admitted to `essentially' believing Doug and Dave's

claims - leaving room for doubt, even in his mind. He also said

that the two men believed they would attain more fame and fortune

than they actually received at the hands of the international

press and media.

Did he believe in a natural crop circle phenomenon Jim was

naturally asked. Yes, he revealed his belief in genuine crop

circles - probably only single circles - such as the Tully reeds

case of January 1966. He also admitted to being baffled by the

Mowing Devil case of the seventeenth century and even suggested

that ten summers of surveillance upon Adam's Grave would catch

the real phenomenon in the act. I found his answers incredulous,

and wondered whether, as a confirmed circlemaker, he was pulling

our leg at this juncture of the proceedings!

Jim was confident that most crop formations are of man-made

creation, and who knows he is probably correct. He said it would

have taken a skilled team of three people some three to four

hours to construct the Barbury Castle formation of 16/17th July

1991. So, if they had begun, say, at midnight, the team would

have finished their masterpiece by four in the morning. If this

was correct, would they have then gone on to construct the huge

and highly accomplished `key' formation that appeared the same

night only a mile or so away at Preshute Down? I doubted it very

much and Jim seemed unaware of the fact that this had appeared on

the same night. I also pointed out that this same night had seen


additional circle at Hackpen Hill only a few miles away as well

as the appearance of a small formation at nearby Wooton Basset.

Jim admitted constructing five formations in one night during

1992, but accepted my suggestion that at least two separate teams

must have been out on the night of 16/17th July 1991, meaning a

total of some six or more individuals involved in these nocturnal

pursuits; how long will they be able to keep their actions quiet


On the subject of Rita Goold, the Leicester medium, Jim said he

believed she was responsible for the White Crow letter sent

anonymously to Colin Andrews in 1989. He even believes that Colin

may well have known the authorship of the letter but deliberately

kept this to himself. Despite these allegations, Jim accepted

that Rita probably had very real psychic talents but acted like a

`trickster' character on occasions.

Throughout the whole evening our speaker was open, honest to

himself, and thoroughly entertaining in a likeable sort of way.

He won over the audience by his openness which will hopefully

allow people to more easily accept the blatant reality of crop

circles being of man-made creation; he also succeeded in taking

away the us and them concept built up by certain researchers

during the 1992 season.

Overall Jim Schnabel can offer a lot of answers to the crop

circle community, but - as he readily accepts himself -

certainly not all of them.

More Nonsense From Colin Andrews

A Transcript of an Interview on BBC Radio Solent, 2nd June,


I am very grateful to an internationally-renowned crop circle

hoaxer for sending me a copy of this amusing interview. This

interview didn't quite go according to plan, but I won't spoil

all your fun. The beginning of the interview is incomplete but

Peter, the presenter, begins with some comments about how crop

circles are now generally believed to be man-made hoaxes...

PETER: ... but a group of scientists now of international repute

claims that these strange markings which seem to appear overnight

are not made by human hand. One of the scientists who's involved

in the research is Colin Andrews, author of "Circular Evidence".

He is spending the next few months in this country undertaking

further research having been to the United States. He joins us

from our Winchester studio. And with me in our Southampton studio

is Martin Hempstead of the Wessex Skeptics. Colin, if I can come

to you first. This seems a very high powered piece of research

for what many people think is just a joke. What is the basis for

your research ?

ANDREWS: Well good morning Peter. I have just flown back to the

United Kingdom from America, having spent what 3 months in a

pretty concerted effort to round up the necessary scientific

expertise to try and resolve once and for all - hopefully -

exactly what is happening with regard to those mysterious crop

circles. We have a number of scientists flying in behind me. I

think, perhaps, the most interesting research is going to be

conducted into

establishing the electro-magnetic field across Southern England

and the magnetic field [at] one or two particularly key sites,

like Cheesefoot Head at Winchester here, Alton Barnes in

Wiltshire and a number of other sites around Silbury Hill on the

border between Wiltshire and Hampshire [sic]. Overlooking

effectively through Dr John Birk [?] at the scrollway theory he

has [??] and believes that what might be happening is that free

electrons are being released at the very boundary - that's the

acquifer boundary between the reservoir water, which of course

is held in this carboniferous structure - the chalk - below

Hampshire and that due to the drought that existed between 1976

up to November last year these vast volumes of water - billions

of gallons of water - were being pulled back north [???] in the

reservoir releasing electrons, which he believes may be

responsible for a plasma vortex of a kind - which, of course is a

theory which you might have heard about before.

PETER: That's quite complex, but what you're saying is ...

you're looking at a sort of geological phenomenon to explain it

rather than anything human.

ANDREWS: That is just one research effort, Peter, there are

others going on also. We are looking at the earth grid vectors

and looking to see whether there is some other interaction

between other external components [ie UFOs, PF] and the earth

grid vector itself of the planet.

PETER: But, ... quite a lot of money is being spent on this,

right ?

ANDREWS: Yes it is. We have funding for a number of projects -

plant analysis is going full steam ahead now because we have

major breakthroughs in the last few weeks and we have funding

from America to look at the plants themselves, analyse the plants

more thoroughly than we have in the past. In a number of

laboratories in America, here and in Germany $ 18,000 has been

spent quite alone on this scrollway theory, which is measuring

the electrostatic and electro-magnetic field in Hampshire and

Wiltshire. A lot of money has been spent and I guess before we

get to the bottom of it a little bit more will be spent also.

PETER: Now let me bring in Martin Hempstead, who's here from the

Wessex Skeptics - skeptical on what grounds ? That we've had the

answer ? That it's a hoax ? Or that it doesn't really matter ? Or

what ?

HEMPSTEAD: There's absolutely no reason to believe these things

are anything but made by people. Also [I'm] amused at the pseudo-

scientific rubbish that you've just heard coming from Colin

Andrews. he didn't mention, of course, that he's got mediums

involved in this so-called scientific research, that Colin

Andrews himself has no scientific qualifications at all and has

never published anything of any value [and] that he couldn't

investigate his way out of a paper bag. I'm very skeptical of

anything he says. I'm also skeptical because he's spent years now

telling us there's going to be revelations in the next few months

that have never materialised except for him and a bunch of ardent

followers, so I think this is just more nonsense from Colin


PETER: But we see circles. Are you just saying that all they are

is hoaxes [sic] by people who are just pulling the wool over

people's eyes ?

HEMPSTEAD: Exactly that !

PETER: Why would people go to so much trouble to do that ?

HEMPSTEAD: People have all kinds of motivations for doing all

kinds of things. If you look through history you'll find that

people have done very peculiar things and its very difficult to

understand their motivations. For example, I remember Jim Jones

of Jonestown in South America, where he killed off hundreds of

people, most of us would find that very difficult to understand,

yet it happened. There are many peculiar things that people do

and in fact I think its quite easy to understand that fooling

people like Colin Andrews might make some people sitting round in

pubs quite amused.

PETER: Alright, well let me bring in Colin Andrews. Its been

suggested that you and your supporters have no scientific

qualifications. What do you say to that ?

ANDREWS: Well first of all Peter, isn't it sad that what you're

listening to are two human being talking to eachother and simply

the energy which is coming from the scientist - the doctor that

you have sat there - who has been asked many times by myself and

the scientists working with me to join the research effort and

the best he's been able to do

HEMPSTEAD (Interrupting): I've never been asked by you to do

anything Colin...

ANDREWS: ... is to join Doug and Dave and to tread corn down in

constructing hoaxes. I'd like to ask him, if I may, through you,

just to ask two very simple very basic questions. Does he first

of all understand what the polyembryonic condition is. Can he

explain how it has been replicated only from plants in genuine

crop circles in Canada, Germany, Australia and Great Britain, and

this is just not replicable in plants in control samples in those


PETER: Well, I must admit I don't know what the polyembryonic

condition is, I don't want to become too scientific-bound. I'll

let Martin answer that in the sense of do you not accept that

there may be geological phenomena that we don't fully understand?

HEMPSTEAD: Well that's a very broad question and of course the

answer has to be yes, but in this case we don't need to invoke

any unknown phenomenon. Its quite easy to understand why crop

circles form but the argument of people like Colin Andrews is

fairly simple its because if people like Colin Andrews can't see

how they are made he can't see how they are hoaxed he tells us

that therefore no human being could hoax them. This strikes me as

rather a high degree of arrogance - in other words because he

can't figure out how something is done it can't have been done by

human beings. There is absolutely no reason to believe that

they're anything but made by people and its just as simple as

that. Now all this nonsense about polyembryony is just more

waffle. Let's see it published in some reputable journals and

replicated by reputable scientists and then we'll believe it.

ANDREWS: Well that's exactly what is going to happen.

HEMPSTEAD: Well this has been done for a couple of years now

Colin but it hasn't been published yet. I don't wait around for

two years to publish things that have the significance that you

claim these things have.

ANDREWS: Martin, what I would have to say is that it sounds

simply by your rhetoric that this is ..

HEMPSTEAD (Interrupting): ...This isn't rhetoric Colin, I'm

talking facts here. Rhetoric is the kind of thing you come out

with, you don't come out with evidence you come out with



HEMPSTEAD (Interrupting): ... Your book, for example, included

physical nonsense about [...] photons...

ANDREWS: If I can ...

HEMPSTEAD (Interrupting): ... If you can speak sense then it

would be very interesting to hear that.

PETER: OK, well its Colin's turn, whether you accept that its

sense or not. Colin ?

ANDREWS: Thank you Peter. You see this is ... has obviously

become a personal situation and Martin is referring simply to me

and I am co-ordinating and that's all I am attempting to do in

the crop circle phenomena is to co-ordinate the basis of the

world. I have scientists who are qualified much much higher up

the ladder than Martin is. We have ..

HEMPSTEAD: ... Qualifications do not matter - its publication

and evidence...

ANDREWS: You see, let me just finish because I'm trying to tell

you that Nature, which you know as one of the world's eminent

papers, literary in the scientific journals of the world, and

they are just about [changing his mind] - they have accepted a

paper from Dr Levengood and he is going to announce to the world

exactly what is happening in the changes to the genetic structure

of the plants which are creating this polyembryony condition

inside plants only inside genuine crop circles and this cannot be

replicated by human beings - which is what I tried to say on

Central TV when you became extremely hysterical last time....

PETER: Martin, is what you're saying is that you don't want any

more money spent on these kinds of projects at all. That we know

all we need to know ?

HEMPSTEAD: If people want to spend their own money that's

entirely up to them. It seems a shame to me that the United

Nations would spend it...

PETER: Well that was my question, that the United Nations -

Colin is going to speak to the United Nations - as I understand

it, in New York later on - they appear to be taking it rather

more seriously than you are.

HEMPSTEAD: Well it is of course the parapsychology committee of

the U.N. rather than the entire U.N. I suspect that if you were

to talk to other members of the U.N. they might be very dubious

about it but in fact what does the U.N. know about it?

Absolutely nothing. They haven't been there, they haven't

investigated hoaxes, they haven't in fact hoaxed these things

themselves. Colin Andrews well knows that he's been taken in by

formations that he thought were what he called real unhoaxed crop

circles which in fact were made by people and the U.N. has no

knowledge of things like this, they haven't been there, they

don't know.

PETER: Colin Andrews - you'll be persevering I take it with

this, despite this kind of criticism...

[Total Silence]

PETER: Oh ! Apparently he won't !! I think we may have

temporarily lost Winchester....

Editorial Comments

At this point in the interview Colin Andrews appears to have

simply turned the microphone off in the tiny unmanned studio he

was using in Winchester. Having done many radio interviews from

this same cigarette-stubbed room without experiencing any of

those "technical problems" so beloved of the Beeb I find it

difficult to understand how an electrical genius like Colin

Andrews might have

accidentally lost contact with the BBC studios in Southampton

(only 10 miles away).

Throughout this increasingly acerbic debate Colin Andrews sounded

uncharacteristically unsure of himself. At several points he

talked very slowly, as if desperately searching for the correct

combination of words to respond to Martin Hempstead's arguments.

Then suddenly it was the old Colin Andrews we used to know so

much about. Perhaps the "implant" in his forehead was turned up

a notch by the aliens ?

A more interesting issue raised by this interview is Andrews'

claim that a paper discussing alleged embryony in crop circles

has been accepted by Nature (arguably the world's leading


scientific journal). Of course, if true this would be a major

scientific break-through - one which would challenge many

people's view of the crop circles overnight. On June 16th I wrote

to Nature to check this claim. As you can see from the panel,

Nature refute accepting such a paper from Dr Levengood, although

reading a bit between the lines it looks as though Levengood

certainly submitted such a paper.

Once again it seems that Mr Andrews is living in a different

world to the rest of us. And once again we expect Mr Andrews, if

he is a honourable man, to withdraw this incorrect claim in a

public statement.

Now for Martin Hempstead. Well we've all heard that claim before

haven't we...

"There's absolutely no reason to believe these things are

anything but made by people. "

Of course not Martin. Not if you totally ignore documented eye

witness testimony, the numerous historical cases or the

established pre 1980 belief in a meteorological explanation

amongst certain sections of the farming community. Not if you

sweep this

embarrassing evidence under the carpet without discussing it.

Strange, but I thought Andrews was the one who was supposed to be

the True Believer.

This really leaves me with just one question. Which of these two

men are promoting a religion ? Is it Andrews, with his desperate

twists and turns to promote a "genuine" cereology ? Or is it

Hempstead, with his "Science Reigns Supreme" philosophy ? Please

will somebody let me know. Thanks. PF.

Get it Right !!

I must apologise to Jun-Ichi Takanashi for consistently spelling

his name wrongly in CW16. This was caused by slow and agonising

brain death following Reading's failure to reach the play-off

finals by a mere four points.

Magazine Roundup

International UFO Reporter, 24 pages, A4 format, professionally

produced with illustrations. Subscription rates available from

the J.Allen-Hynek Centre for UFO Studies, 2457 West Peterson

Avenue, Chicago, Illinois, 60659, USA. November/December issue

contains a valuable account by Michael Swords of his archive

research into Gray Barker, best known for his seminal "They Knew

Too Much About Flying Saucers" (1956), the book which first

established the motif of sinister threats from Men-in-Black

desperate to silence UFO investigators and their witnesses for

ever. Swords makes a strong case for the infamous visit from

three Men-in-Black being a visit from intelligence agents out to

keep Barker away from technological secrets (rather than UFOs).

George Wingfield sit up at the back there ! Richard Haines

presents a curious physical trace case from the Urals. Ole Jonny

Braenne analyses the famous Spitsburgen UFO crash of 1952,

concluding that the story is pure fiction. Editor Jerry Clarke

takes on the super skeptics. January/February 1993 issue

contains a second fascinating article by Walter Webb

describing his 31 year association with J. Allen-Hynek, the

father of modern UFOlogy. A must for historians of the subject.

Chris Rutkowski asks some critical questions about the extent of

crop circle hoaxing in Britain whilst Ballester Olmos describes

the release of previously classified UFO reports by the Spanish

Air Force. Budd Hopkins takes Carl Sagan to task for his

apparent dismissal of the abduction experience whilst Kevin


questions various skeptical attacks that have been made against

the alleged crash of an alien craft at Roswell in 1947. Two

excellent issues. Sadly the March/April issue is almost wholly

devoted to the astonishingly virulent argument that has developed

around the "Linda Cortile" case - an alleged abduction by aliens

in down-town Manhattan involving one of the world's most well

known political figures as well as several other third hand

witnesses. A group of skeptics appear to have discovered some

highly damaging evidence about this case but their method of

presenting this damming evidence seems to have stirred up a real

old hornets nest. We even have John Mack - Head of the Harvard

School of Psychiatry -

claiming that "Linda" is "clinically, characterologically,

humanly ... incapable of such a deception". Oh dear ! Now I

predict that in a year or two that will be another high powered

academic career in ruins. When will they learn ???

UFO Times, BUFORA, 2c Leyton Road, Harpenden, Herts, AL5 2TL.

Summer issue (nos 19-20) contains an article about the "Multi-

Stimuli Hypothesis" by Robert Moore, who surveys numerous

rational explanations for UFO reports. Also an Investigations

Diary and reports on the numerous misidentifications of the

Daily Star airship which attracted a lot of media interest in

1992. The highlight of issue 21 is its emphasis on UFO cases

from all over Europe. Issue 22 features an alleged abduction in

the Quantock Hills of Somerset plus the controversial Mary Seal-

inspired "Global Deception" conference. May/June issue contains

more on the Quantock case, notes by Clive Potter and Robert

France on "The Shadow of Man" project. Cynthia Hind dissects the

South African UFO crash case whilst Gordon Millington reviews the

infamous Villas-Boas case.

MUFON UFO Journal, 24 pages, $ 3.00 per issue. Write to 103

Oldtowne Road, Seguin, Texas 78155-4099, USA. November 1992 issue

contains Jim Schnabel's infamous "Confessions of a Crop Circle

Spy!" article, a must for all crop circle afficionados ! There is

also an Open Letter to the Secretary-General of the United

Nations appealing to the UN to begin funding research into UFOs.

Fat chance eh ! The most controversial and damaging aspect of the

January issue is Walt Andrus' unashamed promotion of the Gulf

Breeze hoax - this despite the discovery of the model which Ed

Walters allegedly used to fabricate his spaceship photos and

despite the fact that an alleged accomplice has confessed !!! How

dare MUFON continue to promote this blatant and deeply damaging

fraud of a case in UFOlogy's name. The February issue

concentrates on "Fire in the Sky", the new UFO movie by Paramount

Pictures, with a revealing interview with Travis Walton himself.

Both January and February issues contain correspondence on the

Swangate hoax. March issue discusses UFOs that shoot back, the

rather predictable expose of Gerald Anderson - an alleged

witness to the 1947 crash of an alien spaceship at Roswell, New

Mexico - and there's another facetious article by Dr Willy Smith.

Sadly the most important piece of information in this issue is

hidden away on page 15 rather than being promoted on the front

page as a triumph for skeptical UFOlogy over the true believers.

John Coates of Houston has recently tracked down State Policeman

R.N. Ferguson, the officer who first called at the tiny hamlet of

Hopkinsville, Kentucky, in 1955. Coates reports Ferguson's

opinion (at the time of his investigation in 1955) that there was

nothing to the story, for he found little evidence of any

encounter with little goblins and he recalls that the witnesses

were "not the most stable people you'll ever meet". This classic

UFO story allegedly features several adults shooting at a group

of tiny alien creatures (it is pretty much without parallel in

the English-speaking UFO literature) but Ferguson found only one

bullet hole - a SQUARE hole 1 inch across - in a window, which he

concluded had been "cut out with a razor blade". Furthermore -

and you never hear this in the classic retelling of the story -

there was a science fiction film showing at the local theatre

that week. Perhaps it was "The Day The Earth Stood Still" ? The

May issue contains Michael Strainic's

fascinating discussion of crop circles and squashed porcupines.

Jim Schnabel has an important article about Munchausen's syndrome

and its implications for alleged paranormal experiences

(particularly for alien abduction claims). An absolute must for

any objective researcher. The June issue is just out, with a

full report on the Louisville, Kentucky helicopter-UFO chase

described in our last issue, a very amusing report on the

ultimate UFO Conference (where the UFOs just turn up to display

their supremacy to any old UFOlogist who just happens to chance

along) and there is the "inside story" of "Linda Cortile" -

currently the centre of one of the most vitriolic arguments in

American UFOlogy for many years.

The Journal of Meteorology, Vol 18, no 179, May/June 1993. 54

Frome Road, Bradford-on-Avon, Wiltshire, BA15 1LD. Issue 174

carries further comment by David Reynolds on possible locations

for the possible crop circle at Assenuncuria in 1590 (described

in Robert Plott's "The Natural History of Staffordshire, 1686).

There is also a drawing and description of yet another circular

ice trace - in the River Don near Toronto, Canada - this too

rotates due to the flow of water. Issue 175 carries a full report

on the damage caused by a tornado in the Norfolk village of Long

Stratton on 14 December 1989 as well as an account of the 4th

TORRO Conference on Ball Lightning held at Oxford Polytechnic on

11 July 1992. Issue 176 carries another excellent account by Dana

Mack of what its like to drive alongside a tornado in Oklahoma.

If you're interested in Ball Lightning get issue 178 - there's a

full statistical analysis of more than 2,000 BL events from

Russia and Austria. Issue 179 carries a full report on swirled

traces found in snow in the mountains of Iran (1968) and Turkey

(1975) by a university

geologist, Dr. Alan Wells. The Turkish swirls were found in deep

thawing snow at a height of around 1,800 metres in the Munzur

Mountains. The drawing shows that there were at least six anti-

clockwise swirls, all six to eight metres in diameter, with

several cases of over-lapping. During my university studies I

did discover well documented accounts of polygonal markings

heaved out of thermafrost in the Siberian tundra, but I found

nothing like these swirled traces. There is also a good summary

of Operation Bluehill summarising Meaden's latest views about the

extent of crop circle hoaxing.

Wonderland, a sideways glance at the weird, wonderful & bizarre.

This is a new magazine published by Craig Harris of 5 Willow

Court, Droitwich, Worcestershire, WR9 9HL. 16 pages A5, 60p per

issue, # 2.00 for 4 issues per year. This is a relatively

skeptical magazine containing articles on UFOs, cryptozoology,

apparitions, men-in-black, puma sightings, etc etc. You name it

it'll be in here.


The Crop Watcher is an independent non-profit-making magazine

devoted to the scientific study of crop circles and the social

mythology that accompanies them. All articles are copyright to

the authors and should not be reproduced without obtaining

written permission from the authors. Articles appearing in The

Crop Watcher do not necessarily reflect the views of the Editor

or other contributors. Readers are welcome to submit articles


publication and will receive free copies of The Crop Watcher in

return. Offers of exchange magazines are also welcome.


High quality aerial photographs of crop circles available from

Richard Wintle, Calyx Photo News, Marlborough House, 26 High

Street, Swindon, Wiltshire, SN1 3EP. Telephone 0793-520131 and

ask for Julie.

Quality aerial photographs of the 1992 Wiltshire formations. 6" x

4" = # 1.25. Posters also available. For a full list and detailed

description please send a sae to Anthony Horn, 23 Sea View Drive,

Scarborough, North Yorkshire, YO11 3HY.

The Crop Watcher is printed by Northern Arts Publishing, Roper

Lane, Thurgoland, South Yorkshire. S30 7AA. Telephone 0742



The Crop Watcher is published six times a year and costs # 1.50

to UK subscribers and # 2.50 to overseas subscribers. A full

year's subscription costs # 9.00 to UK subscribers and # 15.00

sterling for overseas subscribers. Please make cheques payable

to "Paul Fuller" (not "The Crop Watcher"). Overseas

subscribers should not send cheques drawn on overseas banks.

Cheques drawn on banks which are not part of the British clearing

system attract a commission of about # 10 per cheque.

Subscriptions can also be sent via an International Money Order.

A limited number of back issues are available. All

correspondence should be sent to Paul Fuller, 3 Selborne Court,

Tavistock Close, ROMSEY, Hampshire, SO51 7TY.


"Crop Circles, A Mystery Solved" by Jenny Randles and Paul Fuller

(Robert Hale Ltd), # 5.99 pb. A new and extensively updated

edition will be published in August 1993, price # 7.99.

Finally, our best wishes go to Ralph Noyes, who is in hospital

following his accident. All the best for a speedy recovery.


Chris Rutkowski -

University of Manitoba - Winnipeg, Canada

From (Chris Rutkowski) Sat Jan 15 15:58:55 1994


From: (Chris Rutkowski)

Newsgroups: alt.paranet.ufo

Subject: Crop Watcher #18

Summary: CW 17

Keywords: crop circles

Message-ID: <2h9lef$>

Date: 15 Jan 94 20:58:55 GMT

Organization: The University of Manitoba

Lines: 2875


Crop Watcher #18

Doug Bower at the Nafferton Hall, Marlborough, July 28th 1993

Driving up to Marlborough one sunny evening in July I wondered

whether I was about to attend the crop watcher's morgue or one

giant punch-up. How would the cerealogists react to having Doug

Bower there in person ? Would they believe his tale ? Or would

they physically assault him for his treachery ? And what would

they do to someone like me who had dared to publicly accept

Doug's claim that he and Dave Chorley began making crop circles

in the mid 1970s ?

Nafferton Hall was difficult to find, located up a dark unlit

alleyway opposite Marlborough Town Hall. The hall itself was

raised above surrounding back gardens up some steep iron steps. I

paid my fiver and went in. Surprise number one was the size of

the place. The doors had just opened and already all the seats

were taken ! I guess there were less than a hundred people in the

room and I struggled to reach friends and acquaintances as people

pushed and shoved their way round what little space remained.

Many tried to inspect the two large display boards that Ken Brown

and Doug Bower had obviously spent a good deal of time preparing.

So great was the crush that I was barely able to examine this

photographic evidence, let alone Doug and Daves' circle making

equipment positioned on the far side of the room. Nevertheless

what I saw on that board convinced me beyond a shadow of a doubt

that this was no "fraudulent sham" as George Wingfield would have

it but a well-organised presentation of Doug and Daves' case.

With some

misgivings I soon realised that I was possibly the most senior

"cerealogist" there. Pat Delgado and Colin Andrews were

conspicuous by their absence, as was Michael Green, Jim Schnabel

(back at CIA headquarters in the States) and Terence Meaden

(sunning himself at his luxurious French Villa - paid for by MI5

of course). Also missing was George Wingfield, who had somewhat

inconveniently stepped on a nail a few days before (typically,

George had forgotten to send his apologies). Oh dear ! Looks

like I'll have to defend the "science" of "cereology" all on my

own !!

Ken Brown welcomed everyone to the meeting, which began promptly

at 7.30. Brown began by warning everyone present that this was an

opportunity for Doug Bower and himself to present their evidence,

not for anyone to interrupt their presentation, to promote their

personal theories or to cause a disturbance, which would not be

tolerated. Almost immediately, as if the crop spirits themselves

had been aroused, his introduction was interrupted by someone's

tape recording loudly misbehaving. Such was Ken Brown's good

nature that this was quickly brushed aside as "NOT the

Grasshopper Warbler".

Brown explained that he was Doug Bower's "amanuensis" - his

"taker of notes" - and that he had realised that all circles were

hoaxes after discovering underlying tracks at the 1991 double-

ringed flower at Cheesefoot Head. He explained that in January

1992 he had subsequently approached Doug Bower in order to

clarify certain aspects of his claim. Over the next 18 months

Brown repeatedly visited Doug Bower's picture-framing shop in

Southampton, sometimes spending whole days there. What Ken Brown

discovered in these meetings only convinced him further of the

truthfulness of their claim.

Ken Brown then made an astonishing statement about the absence of

Dave Chorley, stating that Chorley had deliberately not been

asked to attend the meeting. Doug Bower explained "During the

past 22 months it has become obvious that David's memory is not

as clear and accurate as it could be - and there are those who

would use this to their own advantage. This type of meeting

relies upon answers being as accurate as possible, so we thought

it best not to give anyone an opportunity to confuse the issue.

That's the real reason why Dave is not here tonight.... ". Ken

Brown clarified this statement by explaining that Doug Bower was

the mastermind who was responsible for "99 per cent" of the crop

circle hoaxing. By contrast according to Brown Dave Chorley would

be the first to admit that he was "just another pair of hands who

happened to be there".

Brown then asked what he believed to be the most important

question - has there ever been a genuine crop circle or did these

two men invent the phenomenon in the mid 1970s ? Brown stated

that if all crop circles are hoaxes then ALL attendant phenomena

can also be dismissed. He then introduced the display of Doug

Bower's own photographs taken during every year since 1980.

According to Brown this was primary evidence which proved their

case. These

photographs were debated repeatedly as the evening progressed.

Throughout his presentation Brown was scathing about the crop

circle researchers, dismissing "Pope" Andrews and Delgado as

"those self-seeking, publicity-pushing, self-styled 'expert'

circle researchers" who had quickly "corralled" themselves into a

"clique of powerful high priests and a flock of willing sheep"

who were "highly enthralled by a hyped-up load of nonsense".

Brown commented "And we all know what happens when power and

position and pennies are up for grabs - we get a brand new

hierarchical religion". According to Brown these so-called

researchers "jealously guarded" their "temples" - the crop circle

databases which were "locked away" from the "unbelievers" - and

they published their own "parish magazines", holding their own

"prayer meetings" and "swooning" at the "shrine" of a mere crop

formation, where "miracles" were said to have happened. "God help

us ! We're back in the middle ages walking bare footed to


Next Brown alleged that in a meeting with Colin Andrews, some

time after the Doug and Dave story had broken, Andrews had

claimed that "There are probably only a dozen circles out of all

the circles we have ever had - that I can put hand on heart and

say I think they are absolutely genuine". Andrews allegedly

confirmed this on 18th January 1993 in a telephone call to Brown.

Later, Lucy Pringle and Pat Delgado are alleged to have stated

that Ken Brown was playing with people's "faiths" and

"irrationalities" and that by

investigating the Doug and Dave claim there was a "danger" that

Brown was destroying the beliefs of "90 per cent of the crop

circle believers". Brown alleged that Delgado and Pringle were

keen to hush up the truth about the Doug and Dave claim and

simply "worry about people's faiths and dreams" in case they

ended up "like the Bishop of Durham". It was this desire which

had led to "screaming abuse" from the "circle establishment", who

had accused Doug and Dave of telling "a pack of lies" and of

being "government secret agents". According to Brown, "The circle

establishment has always fabricated its own form of The Truth.

They resort to diatribe and innuendo, and - worst of all -

finally to the last resort of paranoia, where everybody and

everything can be explained away as The Enemy".

Ken Brown took the opportunity to explain why Doug and Dave had

not - as had been their original plan - written a book about

their circle-making. Apparently they had been advised by a

solicitor that a written confession that they had made a specific

circle at a specific site in a stated year would be interpreted

by the courts as a clear admission of trespass and whilst the

final proof that financial loss had been incurred would be the

responsibility of an individual landowner it was quite possible

that a judge would seek to make an example of Doug and Dave,

perhaps with a fine of # 10,000 or a 3 month prison sentence.

Despite this in early 1993 Ken Brown had given Jurgen Kronig a

full written account of Doug and Daves' story which, for reasons

the German publishers never made clear, was dropped from the

second edition of Kronig's book in May. These two meetings were

thus the only opportunity the crop circle community would have to

question Doug Bower personally.


Doug Bower then read out a prepared statement which read "I'd

like to apologise to farmers and landowners, and to thank them

for the tolerant and good-humoured way in which they've viewed


escapades of two middle aged pranksters who became obsessed with

an idea - it was nothing more than a practical joke from the


During his opening remarks Doug Bower bitterly attacked the "so-

called" researchers and experts for their commercialisation of

the phenomenon. He claimed that he and Dave Chorley stopped

making circles because they were "so disgusted" with the huge

amounts of money that these "researchers" had made from their

promotion of his circles. "I've had the biggest insight into the

human being ever in the last few years ... We've been insulted,

my wife's been

insulted. What a defence these people have put up ! Government

agents ! We've not called anyone any names at all ! All we've

said is the truth - in the [news]paper. But we've been insulted

left, right and centre, we're [accused of being] frauds, we're

[accused of being] liars, government agents ! They're trying to

hold on to something that's been gathered in. I tell you right

now that its finished ! Because had the crop circle hoaxers in

Wiltshire stopped making their circles when we put our story over

in 1991 they'd be no more circles for them to research.... It

had to finish

sometime, it can't go on forever. I don't see why we should do it

for 14 years and not publicise it that we were the culprits. Lots

of people have had a good laugh but it was us - lots of people

don't believe us ...".


Thanks to Ken Brown's research we now know more about Doug and

Dave's lifestories. Doug Bower was born on 25th June 1924 in

Southampton and became an apprentice wood machinist. He

volunteered for flying duties in the Royal Air Force when he was

18, passed out as a wireless operator, air gunner and volunteer

reserve. During the war he became a cabin steward on RMS

Acquitainier and crossed the Atlantic 56 times helping to ferry

GI brides and Canadian Soldiers to and from the European war.

Then he returned to live in Southampton as a wood machinist and

married Ilene. On Trafalgar Day 1958 Doug and Ilene set sail from

Tilbury Docks on a # 10 per person emigration package to

Australia where Doug became a

woodcutter and picture-framer. Doug built his own house and owned

a small plot of land. However, both Doug and Ilene became acutely

home sick and returned to Southampton in the autumn of 1966.

Within 18 months they'd taken over a small shop in Bassett where

they sold pictures and picture frames. In his spare time Doug

became an expert wild-life sound recordist, travelling throughout

the British Isles capturing bird songs on tape ("so he knew all

about the grasshopper warbler"). In his time he has won many

awards for his sound recordings and has even had some of his bird

songs published by the National Sound Archives and the Hamlyn

Publishing Group.

Dave Chorley was born on 26th August 1929, left school at 14 and

became a storeboy on Southampton Docks. His apprenticeship to

become an electrical engineer was interrupted by National Service

but he also served two years as a wireless operator with the RAF.

Afterwards he returned to the Docks and helped modernize the old

Queen Elizabeth and Queen Mary ships. Dave Chorley also sailed

across the Atlantic and during this time developed his love of

painting. At 26 he became the youngest trades unionist shop

steward in Southampton Docks. He married Terry in 1960 and raised

a family of three sons and a daughter. After 30 years working in

the docks Dave Chorley left and made his living "scratching

around", working on colourings and steel engravings, even being

employed by Rose Kennedy, mother of President John Kennedy, to

colour antique prints of the early American west. Later Dave

divorced but still lives in Southampton and works as a freelance


The Evidence

Taking each year in turn Ken Brown prompted Doug Bower to recount

his story. There were many new revelations which rung true to all

but the most avid crop circle believers. One particular story

concerned the creation of a circle at Micheldever next to the

main Southampton-Waterloo railway line. The following day Doug

and Dave travelled from Winchester to Micheldever on a train to

view their creation. Unfortunately the train was travelling so

fast they hardly caught a glimpse of their creation, much to the

amusement of a child and her mother travelling in the same

compartment, so the following day they returned to the site and

made the circle that much bigger ! This incident became known as

"Von Ryan's Express" after the film. This event - along with many

others - was later featured in a Christmas card drawn by Dave

Chorley, which was on display in the corner along with other

Christmas cards featuring other circle-making expeditions.

Bower described how he and Chorley began their crop circle career

in 1975, not the 1981 previously referred to in the TODAY

newspaper. Here are some of these revelations:-

(1) Doug and Dave used to take food and coffee with them, later

even taking a frying pan to cook a meal after making their

circles !

(2) Doug was the catalyst for the circle-making, drawing up the

plans before-hand, making all the circle making equipment, even

providing Dave Chorley with a pair of Wellington Boots and a

waterproof coat !

(3) Doug initiated every circle by (almost always) constructing

the centre first and then working outwards.

(4) Doug first met Dave a year or so after opening his picture-

framing shop. They used to visit public houses for ten years

before they began making crop circles.

(5) It was Doug who knew about the Tully circles and who

suggested that they make a circle to make people think that a

"flying saucer" had landed.

(6) They began making circles by using the iron security bar from

his shop. They used the bar by kneeling on the corn and pushing

the bar half way up the corn. This first method hurt their knees

so they changed over to the stick and rag method shown on TV.

(7) The "first circles" they created must have predated 1976 by

several years because Doug Bower remembers Dave Chorley refusing

to go with him on one of their "regular" circle making journeys

because Dave Chorley's son wanted him to watch him playing in a

school match that year.

(8) There had to be a layby located close by the circles in the

early years. Later, as more and more researchers were visiting

circle prone areas, Doug and Dave would leave Doug's car in the

lane adjacent to the caravan park by the Percy Hobbs pub and then

walk two miles into Cheesefoot Head bottom to avoid being


(9) After making the centre the circle was made by a series of

concentric rings pushed down.

(10) the Alfriston circles of 1984 appeared close to Dennis

Healey's garden purely by accident, neither Doug or Dave knew

about Dennis Healey or the suspicious proximity of "Cradle


(11) Dave Chorley's ex-wife Terry knew nothing about the circle-

making until she saw the "Today" exclusive.

(12) D&D made no more radial swirls after the problems they had

making the 1987 Chilcomb "cheese wedge"

(13) Doug used to telephone Colin Andrews the morning after he

had made a circle to tell him about it !

(14) Doug and Dave's circle at Childrey, Wantage (1985?) circle

displayed a "runway" and "hole" to make it look as though the

aliens had taken soil samples. The soil and corn removed from

this hole was dumped on the A33 Chandlers Ford by-pass on the way


(15) D&D admitted making the "WEARENOTALONE" message in the

Cheesefoot Head punchbowl in 1987.

(16) to avoid detection D&D used to park their car in the dead-

end road by the caravan site at the Percy Hobbs pub and then walk

up into the punchbowl via the A31 back route.

(17) As Dave had to watch his son playing football Doug did the

1987 South Wonston oilseed rape circle on his own.

(18) The only time Doug and Dave were "caught" was at the Long

Man of Wilmington in 1987, when Doug and Dave were preparing to

make a circle and were interrupted by a stranger who thought they

were about to put up a tent. This was on the same night as Jenny

Randles' remote sensing experiment advertised in "The Unknown".

(19) The first non Doug and Dave circle was beneath the White

Horse at Westbury in August 1987 - but the circles were too far

from the hillside to be Doug and Daves' efforts. This was the

year that they made "COPYCATS" . Ken Brown claimed that he had a

list of "over a dozen" circles from 1987 which were not D&D's

circles and that -somewhat paradoxically - "maybe they were


(20) The triangular triplets at Corhampton and the Cheesefoot

Head punchbowl in 1988 were based on the triplet in Billy Meier's

book "Light Years" which were publicised in an article in the

September 13th 1987 "News of the World" colour magazine. Of

course the earlier triplets were all three-in-a-line rather than

in formation. D&D used a method similar to that used by the

"Dambusters" by using string attached to rods to get these three

circles precisely positioned in an equilateral triangle. Because

the rods bent as they pulled the string the Corhampton circles

were less well positioned than the punchbowl circles.

(21) Christmas 1988 D&D fell out so Doug had to make all the

earlier 1989 circles, including a failed circle in rape at

Chilcomb and the infamous contra-rotating circle that appeared

out of sight of the cameras during Operation Whitecrow.

(22) There is some confusion about the "swastika" on the front

cover of "The Crop Circle Enigma". Ken Brown believes that D&D

made this formation and the earlier "swastika", although Doug

Bower can only recall having made the second formation. This was

laid down by laying the outer rim first then using the cross-

piece to mark out the angles. This was another formation where

mistakes were made when laying down the corn. It is for this

reason that Ken Brown believes D&D returned to have a second


(23) On one occasion, in 1990, D&D were making a circle in the

punchbowl when they were fired upon by farmers shooting at

rabbits from a Landrover.

(24) The pictograms were based on a modern art painting. It was

Ilene who proposed making the flower patterns.

(25) After being struck by the toilet bomb Doug and Dave carried

on making their circle to avoid leaving a half-completed circle.

Ilene had to shampoo Doug's hair to remove the muck.

(26) It was one of Dave Chorley's sons who accidentally let the

Doug and Dave story out of the bag to a reporter from the Daily

Mirror. D&D owned up on 3rd September 1991 to the Daily Mirror,

who were not interested in the story, and then to the TODAY


(27) Ilene discovered Doug Bower's circle-making activities in

1984. Thereafter Doug was able to go out making circles on

several nights of the week.


One of the strongest pieces of evidence revealed were the

photographs Doug Bower had taken in every year since 1980. There

was a previously unknown photograph of a single circle in the

Cheesefoot Head punchbowl in 1980 along with Doug Bower's own

photograph of the 1982 single at Litchfield. Also there were

(apparently) photos of Doug and Dave half way through making the

infamous Sevenoaks circles - the ones which led to TODAY's

exclusive expose of their circle-making claims. Ken Brown has

obtained copies of the TODAY photographs which (apparently) show

Doug and Dave half way through this hoax. In addition there were

two photographs of the 1982 Cley Hill circles which had

subsequently been identified by Meaden plus a previously

unpublished photograph of a single in the punchbowl in 1987. [Ken

Brown has subsequently circulated photocopies of some of these


Westbury 1980

Another highlight of the evening was Doug Bower's three

photographs of the 1980 Westbury circles. The first of these

three circles probably appeared in May but had been harvested by

the time of the "Wiltshire Times" article of August 15th. Terence

Meaden has confirmed that this "first" photograph was in

precisely the right place according to his records. The second

and third circles were discovered by the farmer, John Scull, on

August 13th, and may have appeared on July 21st and 31st. For

these reasons neither Ian Mrzyglod or Terence Meaden have ever

possessed or even seen photographs of this very "first" of the

"first" circles. In question time I pointed out the importance of

this evidence (which didn't go down too well with some of Doug

Bower's accusers). How could Doug Bower have obtained these

photographs unless he was the person who created them? How could

he have known that he would have had to drive 60 miles up from

Southampton after these circles appeared unless he made them ? No

one presented an argument to falsify this evidence. On display

were a cross-piece and torch, for positioning the outer

satellites of the quintuplets, which Doug demonstrated. In

addition Doug demonstrated the use of his

extendible pole, which had been used to ensure that annular rings

were always equidistant from the outer edge of the circle. This

was four feet long - which apparently coincided with the width of

standing crop in many of the ringed formations.

One of the highlights of the evening was Ken Brown's impromptu

request for a brief statement by Matthew Lawrence, the discoverer

of many of the original Cheesefoot Head circles sensationalised

in "Crop Circles, Conclusive Evidence" and "Crop Circles, The

Latest Evidence". Lawrence made the following statement about the

state of the circles he discovered:-

"I used to get up to [Cheesefoot Head] at about half past four on

numerous occasions, just as the sun came out, and I was quite

surprised when I went in because I knew that I was one of the

first people in there and they weren't as immaculate as they'd

said in 'Circular Evidence'. There was quite a lot of damage on

the crop, there was tracks I could see in places, sometimes mud

on the actual crop around the edges, which would suggest that

someone had been in before .. so [perhaps] I wasn't the first one

there ... ".

This statement demands a public explanation from Colin Andrews

and Pat Delgado, who have repeatedly stated that the circles they

discovered at Cheesefoot Head were pristine, undamaged and showed

no sign of human entry. If it can be shown that Andrews and

Delgado misrepresented the condition of the circles in the

Cheesefoot Head punchbowl this would be evidence of a cold

calculated fraud which should be dealt with by the courts [see

article on page 30].

Another important piece of evidence discussed was the "red dot"

maps compiled by Ken Brown. These were Ordnance Survey 1:50 000

maps with the locations of all the circles Doug and Dave can

recall having made. According to Brown the maps contain over 40

locations which have never been published anywhere. Brown alleged

that Don Tuersley and Richard Andrews had both approached him

and confirmed the existence of previously unpublished circles on

these maps.

Unfortunately 3 hours was not enough time to present all the

evidence. The audience may have missed the large poster showing

the pavement at Westminster Abbey. The pattern on this pavement

looked very similar to the quintuplet patterns that Doug Bower

claims to have invented in 1981. For some reason this poster was


discussed during the presentation.

Question Time

By 10 o' clock the audience had grown increasingly impatient and

Ken Brown, realising he had over-run his own schedule, wisely

invited questions. By any standard the question and answer period

was heated, although most members of the audience at least

refrained from making open insults. Polly Carson launched a

fierce attack on Doug Bower, claiming that she could not accept

his story because of the lack of photographs showing him half way

through making a circle. Later she accused Bower of being a crop

"vandal" who had maliciously tricked two genuine, contentious

researchers, Colin Andrews and Pat Delgado. She vowed that the

farmers would push for a prosecution. A number of people

expressed their total disbelief in Doug Bower's story. Chad

Deetken from Vancouver challenged Bower to demonstrate how to

make crop circles at night with complex layering effects. Doug

Bower stated that he would be prepared to start making circles at

midnight and carry on until 6.30 or 7 in the morning whilst

Deetken watched. This acceptance of Deetken's challenge drew

applause from the audience. In response to a question from

Michael Hesseman Ken Brown admitted that Doug Bower and Dave

Chorley had made the 1992 formation at East Meon. A woman at the

back described a new eye witness account. Montague Keen stated

that he accepted "most if not all" of Doug Bower's story but he

expressed his puzzlement at to why we were being asked to accept

Doug Bower's story without any photographic proof yet at the same

time we were being asked to dismiss the testimony of farmers

dating back decades when they too had not been able to furnish

photographic proof that they had seen crop circles decades ago.

Keen observed that whilst Doug Bower's story may account for much

of the phenomenon it didn't explain the reported luminosities and

other strange effects reported in the literature. In response to

another question from Michael Hesseman Brown admitted that he was

intrigued by UFO films such as the Concorde flight. Asked whether

Doug and Dave had made any more circles after the 1992 East Meon

formation Ken Brown responded "no comment, and you can take the

correct inference if you wish".


Ken Brown made his only real error of the night when he claimed

that there were no photographs of sharply defined pre 1975

circles despite more than a decade of research. This, in his

opinion, only proved that "corn circles were Doug Bower's

original idea". He repeated this heresy by claiming that the

Tully reeds circle was a "dish-shaped" depression in reeds that

was not like the circles that Doug and Dave had "invented" in

1976. He then dismissed my historical crop circle photographs by

claiming that they showed "slanting edges" ! Contradictory Brown

claimed that he didn't really care what had caused the Tully

circles and that perhaps they had been "blown down by some kind

of force" ! In the question and answer session I too challenged

Ken Brown's claim by presenting my photographs of the Rossburn,

Bordertown and Wokurna circles [which all feature in the 2nd

edition of "Crop Circles, A Mystery

Solved"]. At last ! Here was my opportunity for a well-planned

piece of cerealogical espionage. I loudly passed around my

photos to disprove Ken Brown's treason and this only enraged the

audience all the more. Snigger, snigger !

The cross-sectional sketch of the single at Wokurna, South

Australia, December 1973 (drawn by Peter Horne and Stephen

Bolton) After it was all over I chatted to various crop circle

personalities, some of whom I had only conversed before by

letter. I began by challenging one of the most vociferous of Doug

Bower's tormentors, someone I had guessed to be none other than

Chad Deetken from Vancouver (the discoverer of the famous

porcupine-in-a-circle discussed in CW17). Deetken and I had a

short but

unconstructive conversation. Deetken informed me that he took

more note of Colin Andrews' "13 years of research" [!!!] than the

false claims of a fraud like Doug Bower whose inability at

creating layered crop circles was obvious from the photographs of

the Chilgrove demonstration that were on show. I told Deetken

about the U.B.I. and the "two dozen" other groups of crop circle

hoaxers, but he was utterly disinterested. When I asked him what

the eye witnesses were seeing he admitted that they might be

seeing circles created by whirlwinds. In the end I just gave up,

for here was the epitome of the True believer - someone who had

read Andrews and Delgados' books and was not going to let little

things like facts detract from his belief in alien intelligences.

I spoke to others and discovered that several were outraged at

what they saw as Ken Brown's "arrogant" presentation of the

evidence. For these people it was not enough to see photographs

or to hear Doug Bower describe his circle-making techniques.

These people wanted Proof and could not accept that there was no

proof. Like Polly Carson they too were unimpressed with the lack

of photographs of Doug and Dave half way through one of their

hoaxes. Then there were others, perhaps less emotive and more

willing to accept the word of a confessed trickster, who quietly

accepted what they had been told with some mirth.

Overall I found the evening's entertainment both informative and

rewarding. The crop circle research community owes a debt to Ken

Brown for spending time and money researching Doug and Daves'

case and for presenting this evidence in such an organised and

calm manner. I wish there had been more time to question Doug

about certain aspects of his circle making and to properly

assimilate the material on the display boards. In my opinion

there can be little remaining doubt that Doug Bower really did

create those "first" circles at Westbury in 1980. For this reason

the very reality of the whole phenomenon must be called into

question. It was therefore a pity that Ken Brown chose to ignore

evidence which has already been published (eg in "The Crop

Watcher"). By ignoring this evidence - particularly the Wokurna

photograph and sketch published on page 9 of issue 4 - Ken Brown

risks discrediting Doug Bower's own story as well as condemning

the debate to further polarisation. But these criticisms aside it

was a splendid evening. I should take this opportunity of

correcting the incorrect claim made in John Vidal's article in

The Guardian concerning the alleged profit from these two

lectures. Ken Brown assures me that he and Doug Bower actually

lost # 5 - which they shared - for the cost of hiring the halls

and buying the photographs etc. The Covent Garden lecture will be

reviewed in CW19. PF.

Book Review

"Round in Circles; Physicists, Poltergeists, Pranksters and the

Secret History of the Cropwatchers" Jim Schnabel, Hamish

Hamilton, # 16.99, 294 pages, 18 b&w photos

Although this is his first venture into publishing Jim Schnabel

has produced an excellent and highly detailed account of how the

crop circle myth was conceived and promoted by two sets of rival

researchers - the "Delgadonians" and the "Meadenites". Unlike

earlier crop circle books Schnabel concentrates almost entirely

on the researchers themselves rather than the phenomenon itself.

The result is a hilarious romp through a series of disastrous

mistakes, desperate eccentricity and outrageous storytelling.

Jim Schnabel deserves the fullest praise for being brave enough

to publish where others feared to tread, citing case after case

where the crop circle "experts" pulled the most outrageous stunts

in a bid to convince an agog world of their egocentric belief

systems. In years to come this book will presumably become a

classic sociological study of how the scientific method fails

when confronted with anomalies - proof positive that Science

cannot be conducted in a blaze of media scrutiny. It will also be

quoted as yet further proof that Science avoids tackling issues

that have become tainted with the emotive UFO mythology. In this

respect alone Jim Schnabel has done anomaly research a great

service, for only by studying how Science fails to tackle

anomalous phenomena can we ever hope to change things for the


The great strengths of this book are its treatment of the history

of the subject, its portrayal of the crop circle players and its

analysis of the politics of circles research. The book is

presented more-or-less in historical sequence, beginning with the

"first" circles at Westbury in 1980, the Warminster connection,

Ian Mrzyglod's role in the early promotion of the whirlwind

theory and Meaden's attempts to deal with the evolution of

patterns. Slowly the reader is introduced to all the main crop

circle researchers and their peculiar personal problems. The book

is abundant with major revelations. These include the antipathy

and jealousy between Andrews and Delgado, the full story behind

Fuller's legal battle with Flying Saucer Review, Andrews' alien

implant and Delgado's channelling of an alien entity called

"Zirkka". There is also the full inside story of Meaden's

suicidal flirtations with Andrews and Delgado, the egotism and

betrayal which eventually destroyed the original gang of four and

the previously untold story of the rise of the CCCS. On top of

this Schnabel even confesses to having created numerous crop

circles, including the Silbury Hill "charm bracelet" of 1992.

All this material is treated remarkably frankly, with extensive

verbal transcripts of what might have taken place. Historical

events such as Operation Whitecrow (1989) and the Blackbird

disaster (1990) are treated well. To have portrayed these events

so accurately Schnabel undertook considerable archive research in

the literature and spoke to all the key people involved. Reading

this book I discovered all kinds of things I never knew - such as

the fact that Colin Andrews first became involved in circles

research following his attendance at BUFORA's 1986 crop circle

symposium. According to Schnabel (page 37), Andrews rang Meaden a

few days later and asked if he could join "Meaden's group". Since

this took place in July 1986 Andrews' subsequent claim (eg on the

cover of his "Undeniable Evidence" video) to have been

researching the subject "for more than a decade" is shown to be

no more than a blatant and cynical lie. It also exposes Andrews'

repeated false claim to have been the leading member of this

group. Neither Jenny Randles or myself knew that Meaden had

attended a meeting at Colin Andrews' house where the subject of

writing a book about the phenomenon was first mooted. This is

also the first time we have heard of Meaden's TORRO colleague

Derek Elsom publishing a

favourable review of "Circular Evidence" in the Geographic

Magazine !

There are many highly amusing anecdotes in this book, perhaps too

many to review properly. I was even amused to read those about

myself ! However, I was a little disappointed to see Schnabel

refer to my "UFO" sighting on page 36 as I am sure I also told

Schnabel about its true origin. I saw the light late one night in

October 1967 - when I was only 7 years old - it was this sighting

which triggered my interest in UFOs. But when I was 15 I finally

discovered that my "UFO" was merely a noctilucent cloud - a

glowing cloud illuminated by the rays of the set sun. I wish

Schnabel had included this explanation because the average reader

will assume from what is written that I am a believer in

spaceships rather than a UFOlogist who seeks explanations. I was

also disappointed to read that I had allegedly described Rita

Goold's UFO sighting as that of a "plasma vortex" (page 203), as

I certainly do not recall using such a phrase. This is one of

several occasions in the book when Schnabel makes assumptions

about other researcher's claims and beliefs without actually

checking those claims.

Throughout the book the conflict between reason and pseudo-

science becomes a key motif. Schnabel demonstrates convincingly

that the supernatural researchers were gifted publicity seekers,

their hugely inflated egos driving them on and on towards more

ridiculous and sensational claims. Throughout Andrews and

Delgados' rise to media stardom Schnabel paints a graphic picture

of how these two men almost single-handedly created a mythology

that triggered one of the greatest UFO frauds of all time. In

this way Schnabel captures the mood of the moment. He also

examines the way that established scientists such as Terence

Meaden and Archie Roy helped to legitimise Andrews and Delgado by

allowing themselves to be publicly associated with these men's

activities. In this respect Schnabel's failure to discuss the

NFU's unintentional and badly judged promotion of CPR and CCCS in

their "Code of Practice" is an unfortunate omission.

One disappointment of the book is that Schnabel avoids making the

direct accusation that Andrews and Delgado deliberately

suppressed evidence, although he discusses several occasions when

their knowledge of unwelcome evidence becomes apparent (eg page

123). Schnabel omits to mention the fact that both men knowingly

omitted proof of crop circle hoaxing known to them in 1987 (see

CW16 page 15-18). He also omits to point out that both men knew

they couldn't tell "real" circles from man-made circles as long

ago as 1987 (ref their promotion of the 1986 Cheesefoot Head hoax

and Delgado's false claim on page 155 of "Circular Evidence"). In

correspondence with me Schnabel denies hinting in his book that

evidence was deliberately contrived by the crop circle

researchers. This denial will surprise many cerealogists as it

has been an open point of discussion for some years and

Schnabel's book certainly reads as though he is making such an


Schnabel's treatment of contentious material is highly

illuminating. On some occasions - such as when debating Fuller's

legal correspondence - he merely presents the evidence, leaving

his readers to judge the truth for themselves. On other occasions

he is more open, labelling Colin Andrews a "shaman" and Michael

Green a "pagan" (page 137). I was astonished to read about

Andrew's belief that he had an alien "implant" in his forehead as

this is a story that never did the rounds in the CERES camp. His

description of Pat Delgado writhing in the energies during

Operation Whitecrow is one of the funniest parts of the entire


Crop circle researchers everywhere will know that for the past

few years Schnabel has been seen tape recording interviews with

all and sundry. Now we know why ! His account of a visit to the

Waggon and Horses (pages 198-203) is one of the most revealing

and amusing in the book. Foolishly Schnabel asks Wingfield what

he thinks of Meaden's atmospheric vortex theory. Wingfield's

predictable reply - "Meaden's theory is crap" - totally

demolishes Wingfield's claim to be an objective scientific


One problem with writing a book about the personalities of

circles research is that outsiders - such as Robin McKie of The

Observer -mistakenly assume that Schnabel's book is just as

authoritative and comprehensive about the phenomenon itself. For

this reason McKie wrote in his review of Schnabel's book ("Making

hay with

gullibility", 11th July 1993) that "... The fact that the circles

only appeared in Britain should have been a give-away, of course

...". Similar sentiments have appeared in other reviews of the

book. Perhaps with a little hindsight Schnabel should have

included more overseas cases, particularly those that predate

Doug and Daves' circle-making activities. It would also have been

more constructive to include some of the alleged historical eye

witness claims - such as Paul Germany's (1935-7) and Christine

Dutton's (1912-1956). Although these are retrospectively reported

claims they are still important and form an important part of the

crop circle evidence.

Unlike some of the more successful crop circle books "Round in

Circles" has only a few relatively uninteresting black and white

plates. These plates include the first publicly available

photograph of the United Bureau of Investigation, the major group

of hoaxers unmasked by Schnabel and Irving in 1992. This

photograph challenges Wingfield and Andrews' continuing claims

that the so-called "pictograms" are "genuine". If so who are the

people in plate 14 ? CIA agents ? Or crop circle hoaxers ?

Well, these are all the things I like about the book. Its

amusing, readable and full of delicious anecdotes. Sadly though,

I have some dislikes. One minor drawback is the lack of an index,

which makes the reviewer's task that much more difficult. Another

criticism of the book is that Schnabel frequently describes

events or quotes statistics without giving due credit to his

source. In many cases the source is - of course - a CERES

researcher (such as Andrew Hewitt or Peter Rendall) so perhaps

this omission is

understandable. Many of the hoaxes exposed by BUFORA's

researchers over the past decade or so are not mentioned,

although Schnabel has a copy of the text of Fuller's 1992 lecture

to BUFORA where he gave credit for over 20 hoaxes exposed by

BUFORA investigators during the preceding decade.

More importantly there are several errors which need to be

corrected in any future reprint of the book. We have drawn

attention to these errors in our page by page analysis. Another

problem is the omission of important events and issues. There is

no mention of Andrews' allegation that Taylor deliberately tried

to run him off the road on the Winchester By-pass when a black

crow flew in front of his car (circa 1989). There is no mention

of Andrews and Delgados' apparent membership of the Masons or the

manner in which Delgado obtained the "official" statement from

the Royal Meteorological Society for inclusion in "Crop Circles,

Conclusive Evidence" and amended this statement to discredit

Meaden's atmospheric vortex theory (see CW13 page 7-11). The book

should have examined the attitude of the farmers and their

surprising disinterest in solving the mystery. There should have

been some comment about the police and their failure to take

hoaxing seriously. Strangely the role of the media in creating

the mythology is downplayed rather than being a major theme. In

my view there is disappointingly little sociology in the book.

Why did the crop circle myth occur ? How does it compare with

similar anomaly myths (like Warminster or the Gallipolis flap

described by John Keel) ? What forces were involved and who were

the major players ?

However, by far the most serious criticism we can make of this

book is that Schnabel argues throughout that the entire crop

circle community consisted entirely of gullible buffoons who

missed important clues that pointed to hoaxing, who failed to

apply Occam's razor and who allowed their irrationality to take

them into pathological flights of fantasy. We have detailed


occasions in our page by page analysis where Schnabel makes this

claim by ignoring contrary evidence. In this respect Schnabel has

done a grave disservice to those researchers who consistently

argued that widespread hoaxing was a possibility. By ignoring

these "successes" Schnabel has successfully turned a grey

argument into a black and white argument. Of course we cannot

blame Schnabel for seizing on the mistakes and errors of our

field - afterall we have all been guilty at some time or other of

making grave mistakes and errors of judgement - but it is not

acceptable to ignore this evidence simply to make the evidence

fit the claim. By ignoring the warnings of mass crop circle

hoaxing carried in the first edition of "Crop Circles, A Mystery

Solved" (where the pictograms were (a) predicted and (b)

dismissed as hoaxes) and by ignoring the numerous exposes of

hoaxing carried in The Crop Watcher Schnabel

successfully obscufates the fact that not all cerealogists were

taken in all the time. For history's sake this important lack of

credit needs to be rectified.

To sum up ? A super book, one well worth buying. We award 8 out

of 10 for giving us such a good laugh. Well done Jim ! We now

present a page by page analysis for the record. This review and

analysis has been compiled with helpful comments and suggestions

from Terence Meaden, Peter Rendall and Jenny Randles. In this

page by page review the following abbreviations have been used:-

A&D Andrews & Delgado, PF Paul Fuller, GTM Terence Meaden, JR

Jenny Randles, PR Peter Rendall, JS Jim Schnabel. PV Plasma

Vortex. PF.

Page Comment

7 Actually Aime Michell introduced the concept of Orthony in

1958, not the mid 1960s. Jacques Vallee later wrote about

Orthony in his books but had not invented the concept. 10 Was

TORRO really just an "amateur research organisation" in 1980 ?

This is a bit unfair.

We think Chapter 1 is very good, detailing the discovery of the

original 1980 circles at Westbury and describing Meaden's

academic and professional background in astonishing detail. It


introduces Ian Mrzyglod and PROBE, portraying them as reasonably

rational compared with the mass of UFO groups which developed in

the wake of the Warminster waves of the 1960/70s. It is somewhat

unfortunate that JS still presents the PROBE group "obviously"

considering an "extraterrestrial spaceship" as the cause of the

"first" circles (page 9), as this is not a true reflection of the

group's beliefs. PF checked this with Ian Mrzyglod on 23rd August


16 Its a bit unfair to describe "The Unexplained" as a

"paranormal enthusiasts journal". It was in fact a part-work

which built into an encyclopedia of the paranormal, and in many

respects it was certainly more skeptical than many newsstand

magazines devoted to anomalies. 17 The description of the

Tully reeds circles doesn't fully agree with the description and

plan we published in CW10, which is based on primary sources

of information. 18 In our opinion it is not fair to say that

Queensland was "by then famous for its waves of UFO sightings

and the apparently related nests in swamp reeds and

cornfields", as this implies some kind of dubiousness. It must

not be forgotten that two independent researchers (JR and Claire

Nobel) have both uncovered evidence that crop circles predated

the first media-reported crop circle event at Tully in 1966.

This is vitally important evidence for a naturally occurring

phenomenon which JS should have discussed in more detail. 18

Whirlwinds (ie tornadoes) DO glow and buzz due to the presence of

electrostatic fields. It is fair to say that they don't "flit

about hypersonically".

20 PF's understanding of the Sheppard's hoax quintuplet was

that not only had the hoaxers left obvious trails through

adjacent crop but the crop was DAMAGED, unlike crop in allegedly

"real" quintuplets. The Sheppard's hoax was also a daylight

hoax done with the farmer's permission rather than a nocturnal

hoax done by stealth under threat of discovery, so its poor

quality only helped to lend credence to the idea that

(nocturnal) circles were not man-made. It is obviously important

to demonstrate how and why mistakes were made so that history

will benefit from our errors. We therefore fail to

understand why these facts are not

mentioned. 21 Did Meaden really "shrug" off Mrzyglod's

"deflection" ? PF and JR never knew that Mrzyglod had

"deflected" as he never publicly rejected GTM's theory. PF

spoke to GTM about Mrzyglod on many occasions but never

received the slightest hint that Mrzyglod had actually rejected

his theory. JR recalls Ian Mrzyglod's resignation from

UFOlogy back in 1984. Mrzyglod was sickened by the unscientific

attitude of UFOlogists and the way they simply wouldn't

listen to the truth. JR recalls that there was not the

slightest indication at this stage that he believed all crop

circles to be hoaxes. Recently Ian Mrzyglod confirmed to PF

that he rejected all crop circles as hoaxes after writing his

last article in "Probe Report" Vol IV No 2, but he also

confirmed that at the time of writing this article he was still

prepared to consider a meteorological explanation for perhaps 10

per cent of the data (ie the singles). 22 PF is not sure its

fair to blame the "UFO hysteria" on just the tabloids - some

highbrow press also got involved in the media game - as

well as numerous TV and radio stations in the south and west.

JS' treatment of the media's role is intriguing. There is no

doubt that many media sources -particularly the BBC - have a

lot of explaining to do to those farmers whose fields were later

invaded by hundreds of

sightseers or who suffered from crop circle hoaxing. Without the

help of the BBC the crop circle fraud would never have reached

take-off following the launch of "Circular Evidence". 23 The

"War of the Worlds" broadcast was not merely touched off by the

sound of the "human voice" - like crop circles there were a

host of very special circumstances that triggered the social

response mechanism. This is an example where JS could have

drawn out more of the sociological aspects, eg he could have

contrasted the crop circle mythology with the Warminster Thing -

every generation has a sudden paranormal fad like crop circles

- and in every case the media are largely the guilty party -

JS could have referred to "Folk Devils and Moral Panics", the

classic sociological study of how the Mods and Rockers myth was

largely created by media reporting (it had gone on for years

before the media decided to label it and create a scare story

about how the youth were subverting the nation's moral fibre,

etc etc). 23 Surely there were more cases in 1984 than JS

reports ? PF has some cases submitted to BUFORA from around

this time in Surrey which D&D could not have made. These will be

published in a future CW. 23/24 PF is not sure its fair to state

that the location of the 1984 quintuplet on top of Cheesefoot

Head caused Meaden to "expand his theory again" - he had

already "expanded" his theory with reference to earlier

quintuplet patterns. The precise positioning of the pattern on

top of the hill was never a problem for the meteorological


27/29 The Wessex Skeptics dismissed the Delgado Effect by

referring to much earlier promotions of this effect (dating

back to the early 1920s, see David Fisher's article in The

Skeptic, Vol IV, no 2). 34 JS misses out the fact that PF also

attended the Alresford Park meeting ! Delgado was not the first

person to suggest that the "apparent recentness" of the circles

"was an illusion due to reporting", it was PF (in "Exploring

the Supernatural" April/May 1987) ! Delgado was always very

reticent to discuss historical cases - as JS correctly

demonstrates on page 130. JS misses out a number of important

events - eg Omar Fowler's promotion of the Mrs Jones case (see

CW16) and the fact that PF spoke up about hoaxing (therefore

the last few sentences are wrong). PF has this meeting on tape so

can prove all of this. JS fails to mention that when PF

criticised Delgado for naming an already known effect after

himself PF was threatened with a lawsuit ! 37 Its a bit

misleading to say that GTM was

"professorially reluctant to appear in public with people who

believed in UFOs". Afterall, JR and PF both believe in UFOs (ie

as misperceived natural phenomena) and GTM was not

"reluctant" to attend BUFORA's 1986 and 1987 events, or to invite

JR and PF to the Oxford Conference in 1990 (see below).

37 ERROR. The first anti-clockwise circle was NOT discovered at

Headbourne Worthy in 1986. The Wokurna circle of 1973 in

South Australia was anti-clockwise (see CW3). So were the

Bordertown circles of 1972 (discussed in CW5) and the

Tooligie Hills case from 1971 (CW6). 38 This section misses out

PF's letter to the Winchester Extra (21 August 1986) and the

article in the Daily Telegraph (9 July 1986). This first

letter demonstrates BUFORA's hoax/whirlwind stance and our

desire to uncover accounts of pre 1981 crop circles. This section

also omits Jenny Randles'

interview in "The Guardian" (18 July 1986), where she stated

that "the circles' evolving patterns are 'very suspicious'".

This important article was the first national media coverage of

our promotion of a joint explanation encompassing both

meteorological and hoax theories. 39 Actually there are

documented accounts of animal mutilations and crop circles pre-

dating Delgado's

statement - see CW17 pages 3-5.

46 The small white object in Taylor's photo was suggested to be

a notepad by a number of other commentators (eg Terry Wilson

in CW12 page 35, published in July/August 1992). There is a

similar photo in the first edition of "Crop Circles, A Mystery

Solved" ! 47 Ref the "unusual professional suffix of MASEE,

AILE" - has anyone found out what it stands for ? 49 ERROR:

Wingfield worked at Herstmonceux in Sussex, not Scotland. 52

Actually dowsing is apparently accepted in Germany - see Tom

Williamson's book on Dowsing reviewed it in CW17. It is

important not to tarnish all dowsing claims with the same brush,

the dowsing of "genuine" crop circles is certainly open to

criticism but PF wouldn't be so dismissive of other dowsing

claims having read Williamson's sceptical and open-minded resume

of the literature (which includes well documented double

blind experiments that produced results that had only a tiny

probability of occurring by chance alone).

63 It is surely not correct to state that by 1986 the circles

had an "increasingly broad territory". This claim omits the

overseas cases we have documented that predated 1980 as well as

the crop circle cases in other parts of Britain that we

discovered (eg in Gloucestershire, Cheshire, Cumbria, etc). This

creation of the Mythical "Wessex Triangle" by the concentration

of hoaxers in Hampshire and Wiltshire was a major issue

which PF and JR debated repeatedly. We still maintain that when

the hoaxers leave the subject alone there will be

occasional crop circles spread throughout Britain. 64 We disagree

with JS' comparison between GTM's interpretation of the Windmill

Hill air crashes and Colin Andrews' speculations about the

Harrier Pilot. Recent research into some major aircraft crashes

discusses the role of a horizontally moving ring-vortex developed

in a thunderstorm cloud. GTM's speculations at least have a

firm meteorological basis whereas Colin's speculations were

merely "intuitive". It is important to distinguish between

legitimate scientific

speculation based on current scientific research and

pseudo-scientific speculation, but JS seems to blur these two

claims together. 67 Actually PF talked about hoaxing at the

Devizes meeting. Why isn't this mentioned ? This is another

example of how JS seems to have omitted facts which turn a black

and white argument into a grey one - not everyone involved

in circles research promoted everything as "genuine". PF and JR

repeatedly debated hoaxing and repeatedly suggested that

many circles might be man-made. 68 Actually PF made no "public

attacks" until AFTER A&D refused to reply to his letters (1988).

The way JS has written this makes it look as though PF was

spoiling for a fight. The truth is that when people simply

refuse to respond to new evidence or to debate the issues what

can you do ? PF gave A&D every opportunity to debate the

evidence, but A&D left PF with no choice but to publicly

criticise their actions and claims. PF's decision has proved

quite correct given the enormous damage they have done to

sensible UFO research with their

irresponsible and reckless promotion of the subject.

68 Actually PF also tried to convince A&D that hoaxing was a

possibility in his letters. See CW16 pages 15-18.

69 PF and JR don't agree that the BUFORA/TORRO Survey was

"mostly fruitless" at all ! It demonstrated that a mixture of

explanations was perfectly acceptable to the farming community.

This evidence was also suppressed by A&D - as was anything else

which spoilt their fantasies. 70 We are not sure its fair to

describe MUFON UFO Journal as the "primary organ of American

UFOlogy". What about International UFO Reporter ?

70 There is no mention of Gordon Creighton's numerous and

unprovoked public attacks on PF and JR, who he accused of

being "two of the most egregious liars at large in our country

today". By excluding this seriously defamatory statement JS

makes it look as if PF and JR were looking for a fight and were

guilty of escalating the disagreement. Neither does JS mention

the fact that in 1983 JR was removed from her position at FSR

by the (then) new Editor Gordon Creighton without any reason

being given. This coincided with her public promotion of a

prosaic explanation for the crop circles and Pat Delgado's

appointment as a "consultant".

72 This section misses out the fact that after supplying these

statements via their respective solicitors A&D carried on

making these false claims to the public in "Circular Evidence".

Neither does JS mention the fact that Andrews' boss' boss was a

Chief Officer - making Andrews' claim to be the "chief

electrical engineer" (ie a Chief Officer) totally false. 72 This

section also misses out the fact that Andrews was in breach of

the terms of his conditions of employment with Test Valley

Borough Council, as it is not permitted for local government

employees to associate one's personal views with one's

employers in the public arena (hence the statement at the start

of "Crop Circles, A Mystery Solved").

74 PF recalls being furious with GTM for not telling him that

A&D were planning to write a book. This was one of three

major disagreements PF recalls having with GTM. 78 JS's

claim that tornadoes emit "sparks and luminous balls" contradicts

his earlier claim on page 18 that whirlwinds don't glow. 79

We believe that in fact it was JR who first realised that the

plasma-vortex theory might be capable of explaining numerous

UFO reports. 97 PF and JR were very unhappy with GTM continuing

to share information with A&D in 1989, as we believed that it

compromised GTM's scientific status. Despite the fact that

"Controversy of the Circles" had just been published PF and

JR didn't speak to GTM for nearly 6 weeks because of their

annoyance ! 97 The water tank "circle" was actually PF's mistake,

not GTM's ! 99 A good point. Archie Roy's encouragement to

Andrews gave CPR the illusion of scientific respect- ability

which A&D used to good effect - we think JS rightly apportions

blame here in what he says. 101 This section misses an item on

the ITN 10 o' clock network news which featured Operation

Whitecrow and a video sequence of an orange pulsating light

(probably an aircraft approaching Eastleigh Airport) This too

was an early example of A&D beginning to realise the media power

they wielded, as well as it being another excellent example of

how the media falsely led the public to believe that crop circles

were associated with UFOs (ie flying saucers).

103 This section is potentially very misleading as we failed to

understand how Harry Harris' name could be associated with the

Whitecrow letter, particularly as JS claimed in his lecture to

Essex CCCS that it was actually Rita Goold who sent the

Whitecrow letter ! JS has since claimed in correspondence with

PF that Rita Goold used Harry Harris' name to "deflect suspicion"

from her involvement in the Whitecrow letter. The fact that we

failed to understand this implication demonstrates the problems

of writing in such a cryptic style !

114 The Sussex University con is not explained in full. See CW

11 page 33. 114 Was the surveillance equipment really worth #

28,000 ? Given Andrews' other exaggerations this seems to be

another claim which could have been confirmed or denied. 115 We

believe that Don Tuersley had worked with A&D for more than 3

years. 116 We had no idea that Derek Elsom had favourably

reviewed Circular Evidence in the "Geographic Magazine". Yes,

GTM confirmed to PF that he never informed other members of TORRO

about his problems with A&D.

117 The second Parliamentary question was designed to answer

claims made on A&Ds' behalf in the "London Evening Standard"

about official help from the constabularies of Hampshire and

Wiltshire. This claim, like so many others, turned out to be

quite false. Why did A&D not issue a public retraction of this

claim ? 122 So why is "Crop Circles A Mystery Solved" not

mentioned ? It sold 30,000 copies in the UK, Germany and

Hungary, and unlike all other books on the subject prior to 1991


contained a whole chapter on hoaxing, successfully predicting

the arrival of the pictograms and talking extensively about

hoaxing. Also BUFORA's 1989 report "Controversy of the

Circles" was not a "book", it was a home-produced booklet that

was never sold in the shops. JS makes it look as though our point

of view was irrelevant and rightfully ignored. We believe

this is very unfair. 123 We were very pleased to see JS'

demonstration of Andrew's suppression of eye witness testimony.

This was an important part of what they did.

123 Actually it was JR who queried this claim with 10 Downing

Street, not PF. 123 Actually, in October 1989 PF avoided a direct

confrontation with Andrews because of the outstanding threat of

litigation. PF took part in a recorded interview on BBC Radio

Solent which Andrews respond- ed to live a few days later.

Andrews defamed Fuller and BUFORA several times in his response,

claiming, for example, that he had never swopped data with

BUFORA (despite the fact that he had helped with the

BUFORA/TORRO Survey) and claiming that BUFORA had a "very well

known reputation for trouble making", a claim which almost

resulted in legal action by BUFORA against Andrews for libel.

125/6 This excludes PF's documentary proof that Andrews

knowingly omitted hoaxing and eye witness testimony from

Circular Evidence, a crucial part of how these two researchers

misled the public and helped spawn a supernatural myth. 130

This is an excellent description of how the Mowing Devil case was

discovered (something which Fortean Times and The

Cerealogist later obscufated). The case was also discovered by

Andy Roberts at about the same time. JR and PF do not recall JR

mentioning any worries she may or may not have had about

Gordon Creighton using the case to support his own theories. We

were more concerned with the way A&D were bringing UFOlogy


disrepute than with Creighton's writings in FSR. We had no idea

that A&D knew about the Mowing Devil case. Why did this not

appear in their subsequent books or media promotion of the

subject ? This is an excellent example of their data suppression.

137 The Oak Dragon camps were held on the Carsons' farm at Alton

Barnes as well as at Glastonbury. 138 PF and JR were never

invited by the CCCS to join them or to contribute to "The Crop

Circle Enigma" - further proof of their suppression of

evidence. GTM was only asked right at the very last moment - just

when he was busy travelling around visiting and surveying crop

circles. This too was a difficult decision for GTM, whether

to risk giving the CCCS scientific legitimacy or whether to miss

an important opportunity for disseminating important

scientific evidence to the public. The Carsons claimed they'd

made # 7,000 in some newspaper accounts, not # 5,000. 149 This

is very unfair. Hilary Evans has degrees from both Birmingham and

Cambridge Universities. He can hardly be described as an


scientist". 150 Actually GTM warned H. Kikuchi about Andrews

and Andrews was quietly "dropped" from the URSI Conference

(although his name still appeared on the Conference Agenda). We

were pleased to see JS' inclusion of the footnote which

demonstrates Andrews' intense egotism. 151Footnote: If Colin

Andrews is a Chief Officer, why does he have a "head of

department" ? 151/52 The issue of the central clumps is still

very important, as both Doug and Dave and one or two of our

historic witnesses (eg Paul Germany) claim to have invented

them/seen them in the 1930s. Which is correct ?

153 ERROR. PF and JR were asked to talk at the Oxford Conference

before Easter 1991 so it is quite false to claim that we

were only asked to attend to make up the numbers. According to

PF's diary entry for 13th April 1990 he "Spent all day

writing article for Oxford Conference". This means PF and JR must

have been invited at least 10 weeks before the Conference to

submit a paper (probably about 12 weeks). JS presents no

evidence to show that PF and JR were only invited after all the

other lecturers had been invited.

153 ERROR: PF didn't plead with GTM to only invite "Meadenites",

PF pleaded with GTM to refuse entry to A&D, who were

libelling all of us in the press and who PF thought would try to

steal GTM's thunder in the press. GTM didn't tell PF that

A&D were attending until the day before the conference - PF was

furious with GTM and Derek Elsom witnessed the resulting argument

between PF and GTM (although PF didn't know who Derek Elsom

was, and later had to explain to him the problems GTM had

not told him about).

154-6 Is this on tape ? Snow or Church (PF can't remember

which) accosted PF at the end of Conference to ask about

hoaxing following our comments in our lecture (which, again, JS

makes no reference to). Snow/Church was very concerned on

hearing our comments. Again this is proof that JR and PF did

not accept everything GTM said and were prepared to consider

hoaxing as a solution. Afterall, GTM points this out in the

"Afterword" of the first edition of our book ! PR recalls that PF

and JR claimed that pictogram boxes were "additions" by

"hippies". He also recalls that GTM dismissed the case of the

"sprouting ring" as a hoax. These claims are proof that we all

considered hoaxing to varying degrees. 156 PF, JR and PR all

disagree with this description of the argument between CA and

GTM. See CW3 pages 8-9. PF and JR do not recall the

scientists watching "in

astonished silence" at this confrontation. We were still

stood at the lectern at the front of the hall and could see the

faces of all the attendees. We feel they were more annoyed by

Andrews' confrontational manner than by anything GTM had done. PR

recalls the fact that a member of the audience gave Andrews

the opportunity of asking his question. 159 In fact Andrew

Hewitt's survey of the 1990 circles demonstrated that almost

three quarters of circles were mere singles. Why is Hewitt

not credited for this work ? See CW10 and CW11. Hewitt was also a

member of CERES.

161 Actually the Gorleston formation only further convinced JR

and PF that some circles were hoaxes - JR actually condemned this

formation as a hoax in CW3 page 12 so why does JS miss this out ?

Again Andrew Hewitt's survey statistics are not credited. 163

We didn't know that Tom Gwinnet had seen circles before - and in

an area very prone to whirlwinds and waterspouts !! Also see

G.E.M. 16 page 19.

164-169 Done very well indeed !

172 It wasn't Wingfield's "sources" which reported the bizarre

event involving Bill Drummond - this was reported in numerous

Wiltshire newspapers the day after the Blackbird hoax. 173 We

just love the comment about "the alleged informant allegedly told

Wingfield" - brilliant !!! 174 This is a missed opportunity

to point out that the 2 of the 3 ministries concerned have denied

Wingfield's ludicrous allegations about a government cover-up.

See CW16 page 28. 175 Another missed opportunity to tell the

story of how Andrews procured the film from Alexander. We

were informed that Andrews borrowed the tape from Alexander then

later sent # 25 "for expenses". Apparently Alexander had to

threaten Andrews with an injunction to prevent Andrews abusing

his copyright but Andrews still showed the film at the MUFON

Conference. 187 JS seems unaware that GTM promoted this as a p-

v on TVS and in various newspapers ! Again PF, JR and PR were

very annoyed with GTM's treatment of the data. 188 PF and PR

never knew of it as the Devizes Conference, GTM promoted it as a

circles "workshop" ! PF has the names of everyone who

attended this meeting.

190 The b&w photo of a "circle in ice, in Turkey in 1975" may

have been PF's photo from Svahn of the ice ring from Sweden,

which PF seems to recall taking to the conference as proof that

natural phenomena CAN be precisely-defined and circular.

This is the photo reproduced on the back cover of CW8. 191 PF

doesn't recall Ohtsuki discussing motor cars being dragged along

or above road by UFO beams - we thought this was material PF

discussed ! Ohtsuki only had limited contact with Japanese

UFOlogists and didn't know PF or JR at all before he came to

the UK in 1991. We believe that Ohtsuki dismissed the

pictograms as hoaxes at this "workshop". This too should have

been mentioned, as it demonstrates that Ohtsuki was also

suspicious of the more complex

formations (he dismissed all the "pictograms" as hoaxes on the

"Equinox" TV documentary filmed the following year). 191 JS

omits the fact that at the end of the meeting PF talked for a

minute or so about hoaxing ? Again this is proof that JR and

PF did NOT accept everything as genuine - we were very open to

the idea of wide- spread hoaxing and were repeatedly prepared to

say so. 193 PF and JR were very pleased to see JS mention our

annoyance with Goldman over their use of von Daniken's name

on the front cover of our German paperback edition. It is strange

therefore that JS chose not to highlight the way that the CCCS

prevented PF and JR from presenting our evidence at the joint

meeting in Hamburg (see CW5 pages 16-17). Throughout the crop

circle debate FSR's supporters repeatedly refused to allow

us to present our evidence - even though BUFORA invited them to

present their evidence on numerous occasions. This undeniable

suppression of contrary evidence was another key part of what

FSR did. It deserved to be discussed at length as a lesson in

what happens when unwelcome evidence is suppressed by the true

believers. 194 JS misses out the fact that PF, JR and Peter

Rendall all publicly dismissed Andrews' description of the

confrontation at the end of the Oxford Conference as grossly

inaccurate, see the early CWs. 194 Actually PF "kept mum" about

A&D because he didn't want people to think he held a grudge

against them, not because he was concerned about further

litigation. Of course now JS has published everything we'll

say what we like about A&D !! 195 CW had a circulation of c 150

at one stage. Now down to 130 or so (including shop deals). 196

Not the best diary entry JS could have chosen. PF, PR and GTM

stayed up all night several times taking continuous

measurements and watching for hoaxers. 197-203 Very very

amusing ! One of the best bits in the whole book ! 199

Wingfield's version of the facts - as usual -directly contradicts

everything that has been published


206 Yes, we heard this story too ! George was allegedly drunk

when he fell off Shirley Maclaine's yacht into the Pacific !

Presumably someone must have rescued him !! 206 Yes, Rita told

PF the story about the hippies making the face - PF published

this in CW3 page 24. Again JS ignores the fact that some

researchers recognised the event as a hoax and published the

evidence that demonstrated a hoax well before D&D came on the

scene in late 1991. 216 JS should have pointed out that JAD saw

the first fish being made and the CCCS, CPR, MUFON and

Michael Chorost suppressed this unwelcome evidence in everything

they published whilst PF and JR published this event in CW8

page 28. 218 PF and JR are very pleased JS included GTM's

dismissal of the Barbury Castle formation here. 233 These are

super placebo effects !

241 West Woods was the location of one of "Ron Smither's"

nocturnal meeting points in his infamous UFO hoax. This is

something of a coincidence. 242 We were very pleased to see

some degree of confirmation for the animal mutilation stories

carried in CW. Is this a hint that Michael Green (or

perhaps his group) was responsible for the animal mutilations

? JS is superbly vague leaving the reader to work it out for

themselves. 244 This is the same story that Rita told PF.

Delgado's channelling was allegedly the reason why Central TV

changed their mind and invited Colin Andrews to the 1991 TV

programme instead of Delgado. 244-5 This is one of the most

contentious parts of the book. JS seems to imply that John

Michell is involved in black magic !! As for his accusation

about the CCCS being a "religious

organisation" - this is mere opinion - true for the leading

members perhaps - but not necessarily true for all members. 246

This "letter of reprimand" led to an apology from CCCS in The

Circular which JS fails to mention. 259 This is further damming

proof that "travellers" are involved in making circles -

something PF, PR and JR have known for several years (which

we published in CW) but which JS omits to give credit for. 260

Actually these stories about letters of encouragement from John

Major, the Queen and other members of the Royal family are all


exaggerations of what really happened. To our knowledge they have

never been published and do not appear to be the

endorsements the cerealogists claim. Chapter 22 is really very

very funny. Superb !!!

274 Again it is not true that the Meadenites embraced virtually

all of the formations except the pictograms. 278 Why is there no

mention of CW's review of Chorost and Levengood's work ? Again

all crop circle researchers are made to look stupid whereas in

fact some criticised this claim and its promotion by other


280 PF is very pleased to see JS refer to the CCCS continuing to

quote Dudley Marshall's results in their public lectures

after Dudley had publicly withdrawn them - it was actually George

Wingfield in his lecture at Essex University - this was

willful and irresponsible scaremongering by a prominent member

of the CCCS which partially led to more farmers closing their

fields to researchers and sight seers. 282 JS omits to point

out that PR and GTM were also on "Ron Smither's" trail. The rest

of the book is fine, although we think the closing sentence

is a bit hard on poor Terence. The last chapter allows all the

paranormal protagonists to give a position statement but with the

exception of Meaden the remaining serious researchers are not

credited with any opinion. Why not ?



held at Oxford Polytechnic on July 11th, 1992

by David Reynolds

The fourth TORRO Conference on ball lightning (BL) brought

together a set of first-class speakers, many well-known for their

contributions to the subject. The meeting was chaired by Bob

Pritchard of the London Weather Centre, whose voice is instantly

recognisable to anyone who listened to the weather forecasts on

Radio 4 [until about two years ago when the B.B.C. television

forecasters work was expanded to include radio broadcasts]. The

conference was structured into two parts, BL reports and BL


BL Reports

The Conference commenced with Dr. Eric Wooding (Department of

Physics, Royal Holloway and Bedford New College, University of

London) who stated that very few scientific observations of BL

had been made, and it was necessary to obtain accurate

measurements in order to develop a model which would adequately

explain BL. The best methods to maximise the chances of observing

BL under

scientific conditions were discussed - which is made rather

difficult by conflicting basic analyses, e.g. one source reports

that 95 % of BLs were observed during thunderstorms, while

another reports that only 2.6 % occur during thundery weather and

the bulk - 90 % - during dry, cloudy weather (these radically

differing figures are believed to be the result of the use of

differing criteria, such as the latter which may contain a high

number of earthquake lights, marsh gas reports, etc). Eric

concluded that at a site in central England, a camera left

running during

thunderstorms would record BL once in 1,000 years !

Next, TORRO's own Adrian James (BL Division, Archives Director)

reported on fatalities attributed to BL, drawing on TORRO's BL

database of almost 500 reports; again a difficult area to handle,

as data quality is often low - when a newspaper reports a ball of

fire, does it mean BL, the flash from a very close lightning

discharge, the vapourisation of material or St. Elmo's Fire ?

There are a number of reports of BL causing death, but many

reports can be interpreted as death by conventional lightning; a

number of ambiguous reports were quoted as examples. An

interesting statistic is that the average time lag between the

occurrence of a BL event and the report ending up in the TORRO

archives is 60 years ! Adrian also concluded that BL events must

be well-documented for detailed comparisons to be made.

Quite interestingly, it was not until the third lecture that the

very existence of BL was considered (were we all wasting our time

by being at the conference?), by someone whose name will

probably be familiar to many UFOlogists - sceptic Steaurt


Actually, I was impressed with Steaurt's presentation, which I

found well-argued. By means of examples, he believed that BL

(which he assumed to be an electrical phenomenon) could be

explained by conventional lightning, optical effects, etc., or by

the erroneous reporting of the event (by the witness, media,

etc.). Damage attributed to BL and photographs and video footage

believed to show BL could likewise be explained. Steaurt

concluded that as there is no conclusive evidence to support the

existence of BL, it is likely that BL does not exist. (Yes, it

looked like we were wasting our time !). There followed an

interesting discussion, as one of the later speakers (Prof.

Jennison) reported that he had experienced BL on more than one

occasion at close quarters, including once in an aircraft and on

another occasion when the BL moved down his back and arm !! So

perhaps we weren't wasting our time after all.

Prof. Roger Jennison (Department of Electronics, University of

Kent) discussed the assessment of BL reports, which encompassed

observation, theory and experimental techniques. He pointed out

that it is very difficult to assess the diameter of BL, unless it

moves in front of relatively close objects - and consequently, BL

reports should include indicators of data reliability. One

thought-provoking comment was that BL may occur quite frequently,

but as an invisible entity; the electromagnetism believed common

to luminous BL is present, but is not strong enough to create

luminosity. (Now, what would be the result of an invisible, and

therefore weak, BL structure entering someone and then

intensifying to a point beyond the threshold of luminosity -

spontaneous human combustion by any chance ?! [Jenny, Jenny !]).

We then all broke for lunch in Oxford Polytechnic's dining hall,

where business cards were being passed left, right and centre,

the finer points of plasma physics were being discussed and the

very existence of BL was still being debated. However, one thing

certain to me was that the gateau was some of the best that I've

ever tasted !

The afternoon session commenced with Mark Stenhoff, TORRO's BL

Division Scientific Director, who considered the physical

evidence for the existence of BL. One important point that was

made was the limited usefulness of particularly anecdotal BL

reports, as the accuracy of a witness' recollection drops rapidly

after the observation. In fact, after one day, about half the

reports are clearly erroneous while after five days more

imagination than truth is reported. Consequently BL (and UFO!)

reports need immediate investigation if the reports are to prove

useful for research. An example of a spectacular satellite re-

entry in 1968 highlighted reporting distortions; many observers

reported seeing windows and hearing noises (things which seem to

recur with regularity in UFO reports!). The TORRO BL database was

utilised in this presentation, but again the problem of damage

interpretation was emphasised; assuming BL does exist, damage

caused by it may be

indistinguishable from that caused by a ground flash or side

flash - which, if this is the case, will make the understanding

of BL considerably harder. Furthermore, most of the damage

reported to have been caused by BL could be attributable to

ordinary lightning - so a BL suspected to have caused damage

consistent with a high energy may actually have been the result

of a low-energy BL and an ordinary lightning strike. In

conclusion, it was stated that most of the damage reported to

have been caused by BL could also have been caused by linear

lightning; there were only a few cases where the damage was more

likely to have been caused by BL than by linear lightning.


The second part of the conference considered BL theory and not

surprisingly the technicality moved up a gear, stalling the

brains of a few delegates in the process I suspect. Dr Geert

Dijkhuis of Zeldenrust College and Convectron NV (The

Netherlands) considered BL statistics and structure. With

increasing numbers of BL reports being published (especially from

Europe, U.S.A. and Japan), structural theories must take into

account the variability of BL and experimental work needs to

produce BL which mimics the

behaviour of natural BL; laboratory-created BL is still smaller

and shorter-lasting than its natural counterpart.

It was at about this time that an active cold front cleared the

area; the passage was marked by heavy rain and gusty winds.

Conference participants were seen to glance out of the windows,

perhaps expecting a BL to materialise and join the congregation.

I suppose it was asking a bit too much for BL to appear during a

TORRO BL conference, but nevertheless a tornado did occur only 15

miles away and a site investigation was already underway by the

evening. If only BL investigations were executed with such

rapidity ... A brief history of electromagnetic plasmoid models

of BL was given by Dr. Geoff Endean (School of Engineering and

Computer Science, University of Durham), and who then outlined

the problem of energy containment in BL - how sufficient energy

could be contained in a small space and be not just emitted

continuously and steadily, but also sometimes very suddenly. He

then presented some of his own recent work which may explain the

energy containment problem for the electromagnetic plasmoid model

of BL. He pointed out that a very-rapidly rotating electric field

can exist in a plasma without a magnetic field and with no

apparent limit to the electrical field strength; this helps to

construct a realistic model of BL.

The conference was concluded by Dr. Xue-Heng Zheng (Department of

Engineering, University of Cambridge), who discussed how BL could

exist for the time-span reported by observers (typically 10

seconds). The long life of BL may be explained by the existence

of a maximum rate for microwave radiation to be transferred into

heat in plasmas. If I remember rightly, this ended up in a lively

and rather top-gear mathematical discussion which, for the

layman, boiled down to "you can't do that" and "oh yes I can".

All in all, a very enjoyable conference; those interested in BL

but who were unable to attend certainly missed something. But

they'll be glad to know that copies of the 88 page softbound

Conference Proceedings with 8 figures and 13 tables are available

from the TORRO Ball Lightning Division at P.O. Box 164, Richmond,

Surrey, TW10 7RR, and are priced at # 10 each plus # 1.10 p&[

(in the U.K.; plus # 3.00 p&p overseas). Please make cheques

payable to TORRO Ball Lightning Division.



(081 940 9413. Older reports (from any year and any continent)

should be posted to the address above. David Reynolds. TORRO.



High quality aerial photographs of crop circles available from

Richard Wintle, Calyx Photo News, Marlborough House, 26 High

Street, Swindon, SN1 3EP. Telephone 0793 520131. Book Review

Alien Update

by Tim Good

Arrow, # 4.99, 296 pages, 14 photos, numerous diagrams/maps etc

+ index

This is the sequel to "Alien Liaison", Good' best selling 1992

book devoted to promoting the alien myth. Consisting of 13

chapters and a highly selective "World Round-Up of Selected

Reports" Good's book is one of UFOlogical extremes - from George

Wingfield's libellous and deceitful "Circular Condrums of 1992"

to an intriguing and well written account of some peculiar lights

witnessed and photographed by numerous people above the centre of

Montreal, Canada's largest city. Its almost impossible to review

a book a varied as this so instead we've chosen - like Good - to

review highly selected sections to see what we can find ! Let's

begin with George


Wingfield's article is typified by numerous errors of fact and

critical omissions - omissions which some reviewers might

consider to be part of a cold calculating fraud. Here's a

selection of Wingfield's more outrageous claims:-

(1) On page 52 Wingfield dismisses the Bower and Chorley claim

with "It was subsequently demonstrated that most of their claims

were fraudulent". What an absurd statement ! WHO has demonstrated

that Bower and Chorley's claims are "fraudulent" ? How and where

have they done this ? Regular readers will be used to being

presented with arguments like this. Wingfield has an uncanny

ability at conjuring up arguments out of thin air which always

support his cause.

(2) On page 51 Wingfield omits to point out that Busty Taylor

ALSO failed to identify the Wessex Skeptics' hoax at Clench

Common, concentrating his attack on Terence Meaden. This is a

classic case of the cereologists rewriting crop circle history to

cover-up their own failures whilst belittling their opponents.

(3) On page 53 Wingfield states: "Terence Meaden's attempt to

find a middle path, to the effect that simple and ringed circles

are 'genuine', and that pictograms and complex circles (which do

not fit his plasma vortex theory) are 'hoaxes', is equally

unacceptable and cannot seriously be entertained. Indeed, there

are people, desperate to salvage the discredited vortex theory,

who have engaged in the hoaxing already described, with a view to

disparaging the pictograms". This too is a complete rewriting of

crop circle history - for Meaden did NOT dismiss the pictograms

merely because they did not appear to fit his theory. With the

exception of a handful of the most complicated formations Meaden

ACCEPTED the pictograms as 'genuine' and only later concluded

that they were hoaxes.

Wingfield's allegation that "supporters" of the plasma vortex

theory were so "desperate" that they resorted to hoaxing is a

wicked slur and quite untrue. Meaden, myself and all other

members of CERES never indulged in hoaxing (we have been severely

criticised by the Wessex Skeptics, for example, for NOT trying to

make circles). If by this accusation Wingfield is accusing

Schnabel and Irving of being "supporters" of the plasma-vortex

theory then this too is not true as neither are "supporters" of

the plasma-vortex theory.

(4) On pages 52 and 53 Wingfield hammers the last nails into his

own coffin with his sarcastic and overwhelming praise for the

makers of the Froxfield hoax, stating that "It was indeed

magnificent. One could scarcely fail to admire the craftsmanship

and dexterity of the circle-fakers who had painstakingly

reproduced many indicators of genuine circles". In this single

ill-judged statement Wingfield admits that "genuine circles" are

capable of being made by humans. On the following page Wingfield


"What has become abundantly plain is that no one currently has

any guaranteed sure-fire method of distinguishing the genuine

article from the cleverly made fake."

This too is a clear admission that - by implication - all circles

are capable of being made by humans, although Wingfield tries to

cover his acceptance of this fact by engaging in semantics.

Wingfield then goes on to discuss that demonstrably false

argument about how "if we are lucky enough to find a virgin

formation" we'd find "a dozen telling characteristics which are

indicators of true circles". Wingfield doesn't seem to understand

that these "dozen telling characteristics" are now known to be

false characteristics because the circles used to establish these

characteristics were themselves man-made hoaxes ! Wingfield then

admits that it is unlikely that a test will ever be found which

is capable of distinguishing between real circles and fakes. This

hotch-potch of discarded arguments, false claims and wishful

thinking disguise the fact that Wingfield himself no longer

believes in real circles. Why don't you just come out and admit

it George ?

(5) Earlier Wingfield alleges that two un-named researchers

(presumably Irving and Schnabel) conducted an obsessive campaign

whose main aim over the past year or two was to set up and

discredit leading circles researchers and CCCS officials (namely

Michael Green, Colin Andrews and - quite naturally - Wingfield

himself). Wingfield's acute paranoia is well demonstrated by his

description of how the "sceptics and circle-fakers now went to

great lengths to dupe their victims... Before making one large

formation at Hyden Hill near East Meon in Hampshire, they

actually dowsed a major earth energy line in the field and

carefully constructed their pictogram on top of it...". George,

the sceptics don't believe in "major earth energy lines" or

dowsing so how would they be able to dowse one and then place a

pictogram on top of it ???

(6) Wingfield continues re-writing crop circle history by

referring to The Cerealogist's one contribution to the subject -

the West Wycombe hoax farce. To be fair Wingfield at least begins

quite sensibly (page 56):

Although no one expected the [competition] to provide conclusive

answers, it taught us two things. Firstly, impressive geometric

formations can be produced at night by diligent fakers,

indicating that circles which many of us too readily accepted as

'genuine', could have been hoaxed..." - George at his sensible

best perhaps, but next George simply rewrites history by claiming

that "at least half the teams" left behind small items after

making their circles - something which I have never seen repeated


(7) Wingfield's distortion of crop circle history continues with

his claim (page 56) that none of the competitors admitted making

the formations at Alton Barnes, Barbury Castle and the Mandelbrot

and his nieve promotion of Dr Stephen Greer's CSETI project (page

62-66). We publicly challenge George George to justify in writing

why his article failed to tell Good's readers about the

following:-(a) that a group known as the United Bureau of

Investigation admitted in numerous taped interviews that they had

made many of the most famous Wiltshire pictogram formations; (b)

that they admitted to faking UFO incidents by using a set of

disco-lazer lights (see point 12 on page 35); (c) that the

Mandelbrot was "predicted" in a letter to the New Scientist a

year before it actually appeared; (d) that numerous other groups

of hoaxers are being unmasked all over Britain; and that (e)

Irving and Schnabel claim to have made several formations in the

Alton Barnes area.

All these facts are critical pieces of evidence which strongly

influence how the man-in-the-street assesses the evidence, yet

Wingfield suppresses this evidence for reasons we can only guess


(8) On page 57 Wingfield uses that favourite old chestnut about

how the Thatcher Government allegedly received "many documents"

from Colin Andrews and Pat Delgado. Nowhere has any of this

material ever been published by Andrews and Delgado - we only

have their word as researchers that they sent this material to

Nicholas Ridley, the then Minister of the Environment. Once again

Wingfield claims - without supplying the slightest degree of

documentary proof - that there was a secret government meeting to

discuss the crop circle phenomenon in September 1990. We have

already published the fact that we obtained denials from two of

the three ministries involved that they were involved in such a

meeting (CW16 page 28) and we have twice challenged Wingfield to

publish documentary evidence to support these claims without

response. Readers will draw their own conclusions from

Wingfield's failure to supply this documentary proof.

Well we could go on and on and on .... To conclude, this is a

grossly deceitful and misleading account which seems deliberately

contrived to deceive Good's readers by perpetuating a mystery at

any cost. We call on George Wingfield to apologise in The

Cerealogist for this bigoted sham. As long as Wingfield is

allowed to continue deceiving people The Cerealogist can only

become a tool of further disinformation and censorship. We also

demand that Tim Good apologise to his readers for allowing

Wingfield to write such a disgraceful article.

Cluster of Lights Seen over Montreal

By contrast this is an excellent article summarising voluminous

documentary and photographic evidence of an unusual visual

phenomenon seen over the centre of Montreal on the night of 7

November 1990. The authors are Richard Haines, a behavioural

psychologist, and Bernard Guenette, who present meteorological

data, an analysis of photographic evidence, drawings by numerous

eye witnesses and a map of the sighting location. The phenomenon

consisted of a cluster of up to 8 lights arranged in a semi-

circular arc. Each light extended a white ray covering a span of

many tens of degrees of arc. This phenomenon was probably

stationary and observed over a densely urbanised area for a

period of 2.5 hours.

Now let's ask some sceptical questions. Throughout their report

Haines and Guenette repeatedly refer to an enormous hovering

object - mainly because one of the (dozens of) witnesses drew an

object with lights on it. But this is not true ! The witnesses

all reported seeing lights - that is what the photos show. Have

UFOlogists still not learnt that witnesses "read in" structured

objects when witnessing light displays?

Whilst there is some excellent case work here Haines and Guenette

don't appear to have contacted local universities to see if

anyone was testing some kind of device. Neither do they appear to

have contacted local airports in case someone had flown an

airship with bright searchlights above cloud cover. How about

some kind of aurora borealis effect ? What did the local


observatory have to say ? A superb case, but one which I feel

sure will eventually be shown to have a relatively prosaic


Bob Oechsler's "Cosmic Journey: The Aftermath"

With the exception of "Round in Circles" this is probably the

funniest article I've read for some time. This is another fine

demonstration of how far down the line of lunacy people's belief

systems will take them when presented with facts that don't meet

with their previously stated position. In "Alien Liaison"

Oechsler (pronounced "X-ler") describes a prolonged telephone

conversation he held with someone called "Admiral Bobby Ray

Inman" - allegedly a former Deputy Director of the CIA and (of

course) a member of the super-secret MJ-12 organisation that was

allegedly responsible for the recovery of crashed alien

technology by the US Government back in the late 1940s. Much of

this sequel is taken up with a very one-sided conversation

between Oechler and "Inman" whereby Oechler claims to have

demonstrated "Inman" 's involvement in the greatest government

deception of all time. The result, in my opinion, is a very

peculiar conversation between two men talking entirely at cross

purposes !

It seems that the primary reason for this total breakdown in

communication is that Oechsler deliberately avoided using terms

like "Aliens, ETs and UFOs" because he was worried about scaring

the Admiral off into thinking he (Oechler) was "some sort of

kook" (page 207). Instead he makes veiled comments about

"crafts", "phenomenon", "recovered vehicles" and "intelligence

behind the crafts". Not surprisingly, "Admiral Bobby Inman" -

whoever he is -was completely bewildered. Take these excerpts for

example:-OECHLER:- ... Yes, thank you very much for

returning my call.

INMAN:- You're most welcome.

OECHLER:- Do you remember who I am ?

INMAN:- Unfortunately I do not, I apologize.

OECHLER:- OK, well we met at the University

of Science - University of

Maryland Science and


INMAN:- I do pull out, now, I thank you.

[Oechler's "clarifying commentary"] This sudden abrupt

recollection is important because it indicates that the Admiral

did in fact consider our brief meeting in May of 1988 to be

worthy of

recollection. It was during that brief encounter that I asked if

he would be good enough to have someone get in touch with me,

relative to how I could get closer to MJ-12, again indicating

that MJ-12 meant something to him ..."

As you can see, the moment "Admiral Inman" realises who he is

speaking to he tries to hang up - something Oechler uses to

demonstrate "Inman" 's knowledge of MJ-12 (an issue which Inman

never actually mentions in his responses to Oechler's comments).

Later, when discussing former British Chief-of-Staff Lord Hill-

Norton, Oechler states that

"Admiral Lord Hill-Norton is, as the way he's expressed it to me,

quite furious with his inability to gain knowledge on these


INMAN:- [Muffled acknowledgement]

[Oechler's clarifying comments] It is important to note that, by

his muffled acknowledgement, Admiral Inman appears to understand

the dilemma here and recognises the inferred subject matter."

So, even a "muffled acknowledgement" is used to support Oechler's

belief in recovered alien technology ! Later on, their

conversation reaches the heights of hyperbole when Oechler

detects a "smile .. heard on tape" (page 212) whilst Oechler

discusses the alleged "cultural dialogue"between humans and

aliens ...

And so this bizarre conversation continues, with neither man

understanding what each other is talking about, until "Inman"

tries to pass Oechler off onto his successor - Everett Hineman

(allegedly the current Deputy Director of Science and Technology

at the CIA HQ in Arlington, Virginia). Later Oechler even meets

someone called Everett Hineman at CIA Headquarters, who makes a

few pseudo-confirmatory remarks about Bob Lazar (another dubious

character who claims to have worked on captured alien

technology), but like Inman we have no proof that either man is

really who they say they are and neither really have much to say

about crashed saucers and pickled aliens.

All this bizarre testimony is used in a strongly worded rebuttal

to Jerold Johnson's superb review of the "Cosmic Journey" chapter

in Good's previous book "Alien Liaison" in MUFON UFO Journal

(issue 279, July 1991). Johnson tracked down this same "Admiral

Inman" and learnt that "Inman" had thought he was discussing

underwater craft with Oechler, not alien craft. Later, when

challenged by "Dr Armen Victorian" and various other UFOlogists

"Inman" (whoever he is) denies having confirmed the existence of

extraterrestrial vehicles:-

"Throughout 22 years of service in the intelligence community, I

have never encountered any credible evidence of the existence of

extraterrestrial or interplanetary entities, individuals, crafts,

vehicles, or persons..." (page 221). He also denies having ever

heard of the alleged MJ-12 group (page 220).

Of course Oechler himself is an unusual person holding unusual

views. He freely admits (a bit like Pat Delgado) to having an

"unclassified employment with NASA". He alleges that his earlier

involvement with the Barnum and Bailey travelling circus

exhibition [which featured the "Cosmic Journey" Project of a

"captured Extra-terrestrial/alien in a cryogenic tank"] was a

project that he was asked to evaluate on behalf of NASA in order

to consider the likely sociological consequences (something NASA,

quite naturally, deny). Oechler even had a psychic "battle" with

an alien that intruded into his brain in Dallas (where else?).

To give an idea of how ridiculous this story is, even Dr Armen

Victorian enters the fray, obtaining the following statement from


"Having no prior knowledge of Mr Oechlers interest, I did not

understand until well into his dialogue that his research was

into Unidentified Flying Objects...".

But Oechler comes back, dismissing Victorian as someone who will

go to whatever extent necessary to discredit Timothy Good as a

UFO researcher. Meanwhile, all the key CIA and NASA people

mentioned in this article have denied speaking with Oechler,

something Oechler freely admits to being baffled by.

This is a fascinating argument that seems set to run and run

until all the parties involved fall over from sheer exhaustion !


Swangate Update 2

George Wingfield has had a letter published in the HUFON Report

(June 1993 issue). He states

"Well, golly, shucks, folks.. yes, indeed ! First we get Jim

Schnabel telling Armen Victorian on the notorious tape that he's

part of some great disinformation conspiracy involving the CIA,

etc., and then hotly denying it in terms of hurt and outrage.

Next we get Dan Smith hotly denying that he's part of some CIA-

sponsored conspiracy (not that I ever accused him of that anyway)

and then, in the same letter telling us about a great conspiracy

(the Eschaton Conspiracy) in which the CIA group known as the

Aviary -with which he appears to be closely associated - 'heavily

disguised by its own surrealistic smoke screen ... functions best


amplifying people's own misconceptions about the paranormal.'

That last bit sounds awfully like disinformation to me ! Well, I

guess that I'm just a simple country boy who doesn't see the need

for all this disinformation and deception and wishes someone

would explain to me what's really going on. If Dan's end-of-the-

world scenario is for real and is understood by certain

departments of the US government, why can't they treat us as

adults and tells us what the score is ?

At the September, 1992, Conference on UFO Research in

Springfield, Mo., I took strong issue with someone who suggested

that the government was justified in covering up the truth about

UFOs since the public might be 'unable to face it'. Whatever the

truth might be, it should never be suppressed, I said, and this

drew prolonged applause from the audience.

In showing the photo of Rosemary seated next to 'the Pelican' at

that CIA lunch in Arlington, Va., I'm not accusing her or Dan of

any conspiratorial involvement. I was only trying to illustrate

CIA interest in these matters at a time when certain people like

Mr. Schnabel are trying to make out there is no CIA interest and

spread disinformation to the effect that all the crop circles are

man-made hoaxes. I'm delighted that Dan has attempted to clarify

the position, though I suspect that most folk will be more

puzzled than before. Anyway, thanks Dan, and thanks Aviary, for a

most enjoyable and stimulating lunch ! Would someone now like to

explain what this is all about ?

I enjoyed Elaine Douglas' article on 'Is PSI TECH for real or

just a new disinformation project?' In it, she refers to the

Roswell episode as being something Dames calls 'brain wave

entertainment'. Well, I know it might seem that way, but what he

told me was 'mass brain-wave entrainment - the term he uses to

describe an alien-induced mass illusion ! G.W."

Other News

We've received information about the "largest ever" crop circle -

discovered in Samera (northern Spain) in September 1992.

According to our sources the formation was approximately one mile

across and consisted of five concentric rings (each 20-30 feet in

width). The formation was discovered by an Englishman who videoed

the formation from the air. The crop is unknown.

Readers' Letters

Dear Editor, I was surprised to see in CW16 the claim that the

disappearance of the Royal Norfolks was a hoax. I can assure you

that this is not so. They disappeared for the simple reason that

they were all killed ! The facts are as follow. The 163rd Brigade

consisting of the 1st/8th Hampshires, the 1st/5th Suffolks and

the 1st/5th Royal Norfolks (not the 1st/4th) were ordered to take

part in the attack on Tekke Tepe ridge. They advanced at 4.45 pm.

Heavy casualties were suffered, but the Norfolks, under Col. Sir

Horace Beauchamp, continued to push on before disappearing into

thick mist. The Colonel, 16 officers, and about 250 men, were

never seen alive again, although a few wounded managed to find

their way back during the night. It was not until September 1919

that the mystery was solved, when the area was visited by a party

of men from the British Graves Registration Unit. Their officers

wrote in his report "We have found the Royal Norfolks, but can

only identify two. The remains are scattered over about one

square mile, about 800 yards behind the old Turkish front line".

Obviously what had happened was that the Turks had not seen them

in the mist and they must have penetrated a thinly held part of

the Turkish line, only to be massacred by Turkish second line

troops. The Turks, a fierce Islamic people, had refused to touch

the Christian bodies, which they regarded as unclean, and four

years of the climate and predators had reduced the, to

practically nothing. I got the above information from "Gallipoli"

by the military historian Capt. Eric Bush, D.S.O. Jenny Randles

has since told me that the whole thing was also thoroughly

explained by Paul Begg in Fortean Times, No 27 (Autumn 1978). The

so-called mystery was also discredited by the UFO writer Harold

Wilkins, writing in the 1950s, so Jenny tells me. How do these

tales survive ? Best Wishes, Roy Sandbach, Stockport.

PF: They survive because people want them to survive !

Dear Paul, I have a few comments about TCW16 (March/April 1993).

Sorry mate but you'll have to do better than that 486 DX-33 you

mentioned, as I have on order a 486 DX-50 with 16 Mb RAM and a

240 Mb hard disk, etc, etc. Pity I've no magazine to produce it

on now ... but it should speed up my fractal generator, and what

more could one ask ?

Regarding the Wingfield/Schnabel/Irving/Henry saga - and this is

meant kindly - if you take such a dim view of the affair, why not

simply deny it "the oxygen of publicity" ? I'm sure George and Co

will find plenty of other outlets for their views ...

Actually, I hope you'll let me offer a few words in George's

defence. George has always struck me as an honest person -

somewhat inclined to obsessiveness, but that's a tendency shared

by many of us (isn't it Paul?!). Speaking personally, I don't

think George is deliberately trying to obscufate the crop circle

scene. I do believe that there are people who have taken a cruel

pleasure in misleading him - and others - when the opportunity

has arisen. The last time I spoke to him (a few months ago), he

seemed frustrated by the constant torrent of misinformation that

was being directed his way and he was pretty fed up with it. I

don't blame him.

All he wants, like the rest of us, is to know what's really going

on - and I think it would be foolish to dismiss out of hand the

notion of some kind of governmental intervention. The case

against such interference has not been proved - at least, not to

my satisfaction. Yours paranoiacally, Bob Kingsley. Whitehill,


PF: Actually Bob its impossible to prove a negative, but the onus

of proof is surely on George to prove his case - afterall, I

challenged George to publish proof of his allegations in two Crop

Watchers but without reply. To many people this failure seems

just further proof that the "disinformation" comes from George -

not from some mythical government conspiracy. But as Peter

Rendall said - if I was a Government Agent I would say that

wouldn't I !

Comment on CW15: I was surprised you accepted for publication

Andy Collins' article entitled "A Major Project to Test the

Orgone Solution to earth Energy, Crop Circles and UFOs", and even

more surprised that you accepted Alan Watson's article entitled

"Some Notes on the 1990 Alton Barnes Pictogram". The former

doesn't merit commenting on, but the latter is worth a few words.

You will have probably already realised that Circle A ('Mercury')

was not there originally, as the formation ended with the small

off-line circle. He identifies in the formation the rings of

Saturn, note also that 'Neptune' is ringed in the formation, but

real-life Jupiter and Uranus are too. Every planet from Earth to

Pluto inclusive has at least one moon, but the formation only has

'Neptune' with moons ! As for "some gravitational distortion on

Jupiter", I ask by what -and if by the Sun, what about the

remainder of the planets ? Oh, the Great Red Spot is now almost

unanimously regarded as being ... of meteorological origin ! Why

does Charon get 'represented' as a discrete circle while the

other moons don't ? What is the

significance of the second ring around "Pluto", and why has he

included the track hammered out by visitors from 'Pluto' to

'1992QB1' ? He's included '1992QB1' but why not the main

asteroids (between Mars and Jupiter) and the many, many others on

irregular orbits (mainly between Mercury and Saturn) ? On second

thoughts, perhaps the article wasn't worth commenting on. Tell me

its a joke - isn't it ?!

PF: Actually I thought Alan Watson made some very fair points.

Doug and Dave occasionally made mistakes when constructing

circles so I've no doubt that the U.B.I. did too. Don't forget

that both major groups consisted of people who were not always

entirely sober whilst they were constructing circles - and of

course we don't all have such an excellent understanding of the

structure of our solar system. Perhaps the U.B.I. believe that

their pictogram accurately represented the solar system ?

Claude Mauge has written in to correct the following material

published in CW16:-

Case 013: 12.06.1730 at Alencon. Christine Peins (Les OVNI du

passe, Verviers, Belgium, Nouvelles Editions, Marabout, 1977;

81-82) is very skeptical about the event:-

- her investigation by the Orne Departement Public Record Office

in Alencon discovered no mention of the affair nor of Inspector


- the case appeared firstly in the Italian magazine Clypeus, with

no original reference; the author of the paper lived in Lybia

since 1966 and his address was unknown;

- Later, another search in the Orne Public Record Iffuce by its

archivist again found no reference to the case (letter from

Elisabeth Gautier-Desvaux to UFOlogist Patrice Cubeau, GRC INFO,

no 1, June 1985: 3-4).

Case 704- Oskar Linke case: The 1952 date for the case is a long-

lasting myth in UFOlogy ! The real date is June 17, 1950. Some

references giving it are: Ted Bloecher, "Herr Linke and the

flying warming pan", MUFON UFO Journal, no 153, November 1980:

6-9. R.J. Stevens, "Une nuit de terreur a Kelly (1)", Inforespace

no 48, November 1978: 30. Letter from O. Linke to Leon Davidson,

November (?) 3, 1959. Personal communication by Jacques Bonabot,

December 31, 1984 (he had at the time an extensive file on the


Case 057. 04.09.53. Tonnerre (not Tennerre): These traces have

nothing to do with crop circles. There were four well visible

cylindrical imprints in the ground, with very hard soil.

Case 662- 04.01.54, Marignane airport, Marseille: Although he

gives no details, Michel Figuet [believes that] the case is a

hoax (Michel Figuet and Jean-Louis Ruchon, OVNI: Le premier

dossier complet des rencontres rapprochees en France, Nice,

France: Alain Lefeuvre, 1979: 68). In any case, the "trace"

consists of many metal pieces, not in effects on the vegetation.

Case 097. 12.12.54, Campinas: As far as I can re-member, this

case has nothing to do with crop circles. Some people consider

that the material was not of earthly origin, but others that it

was solder (see for instance Charles Maney in FSR vol 8 no 3).

Claude Mauge, FIGEAC, France.

Many thanks to Claude for putting me straight on these cases and

for correcting my spelling mistakes. David Reynolds has written

in to suggest that case 014 was a tornado, whilst the "Fire in

the Sky" case can be explained by Travis Walton encountering an

illuminated tornado which sucked him up into the air,

centrifugued him (sounds fun doesn't it) and left him dazed with

acute loss of memory. David admits that this is a solution based

on limited information, but that it is "more likely than being

abducted by aliens". Listen carefully and you'll hear Occam's

Razor being sharpened by the Skeptics ....

Dear Paul, I feel I should write and say what a very good evening

I had at Doug Bower and Ken Browns' meeting in Marlborough on

July 28th last. Since the Doug and Dave story broke, my initial

reaction of annoyance has changed. Now I think that they have

given us much, and we should be grateful !

Remember the excitement of those times, early in the season,

wondering where the first circles would appear, and what new

shapes the year would bring ? Well all is not lost ! A sizeable

proportion of the people at Marlborough seemed determined to

carry on, believing that aliens, UFOs or mystical earth energies

are creating the circles. Just because Doug was unable to show a

photo of Dave and himself actually making a formation, many

claimed they could not prove they had done any of them ! Never

let the truth get in the way of a good belief ! I find myself

getting more and more cynical these days. So who was this Ken

Brown who was "hogging" the stage so much ? Several people said

it would have been better if Doug had done all the talking. Could

it be that Ken was Doug's Minder (No ! No ! I wasn't suggesting

an M.I.5 connection !). What intrigued me was the way Ken totally

denied the existence of pre Doug and Dave (sharp-edged) circles,

and demanded to be shown evidence. When you produced the Wokurna

photos Paul I don't believe Ken even looked at them. I know I did

not hear him comment on them.

Which ever way you look at it, Doug and Daves' activities were

quite bizarre and the whole subject is becoming more so. Well,

now I must go and do some more work on my crop circle film. Its a

Grasshopper Warbler production to be distributed by MBF.

Suggested titles so far are "I'll be you if UBI" and "East of

Meaden". In the scenario a CCCS girl falls in love with a Wessex

Skeptic. They make love in a corn circle on the edge of

Rendlesham Forest (we had a lot of trouble at this location when

we set up our lights back in December 1980). I would welcome any

suggestions for a title, plot or casting. Keep up the good work !

George Thorman, Trowbridge.

How about "Life of Terence" or "The Search for the Holy Grail" ?


Ted Phillips Physical Trace Catalogue: Part III

Case 153. May 24, 1962 ARGENTINA, La Pampa. Woman saw an object

on the ground with two robot-like creatures. Grass singed in a

circle 18 ft. wide. (FSR 10-62)

Case 154. May 24, 1962. VENEZUELA, Ocumare, del Tuy. Diamond-

shaped marks, scorched. (NICAP)

Case 155. July 30, 1962. ARGENTINA, Bajeola Grande. Roberto

Mievres, 17, was riding his motorcycle when a tall being appeared

as the engine stalled. The being snatched the boy's scarf, the

boy ran away and came back with a group of people. They found the

scarf on the ground and discovered traces and observed an unknown

object flying away. (VALEE III).

[PF The evidence here rests a great deal on whether the group of

people were known to the witness prior to the encounter and how

long the witness had to fabricate the traces.]

Case 488. November 21, 1963. ENGLAND, Sandling Estate [Kent].

Keith Croucher, 17, saw a solid oval light in the center of a

golden mist crossing a football pitch. Two nights later, John

McGoldrick and a friend went to Sandling Woods to investigate.

"They found a vast expanse of bracken that had been flattened;"

they also found three giant foot-prints, clearly defined, 1 inch

deep, 2 foot long and 9 inches across. (The Humanoids).

[PF. A very famous case. Does anyone know if it was ever exposed

as a hoax ?]

Case 164. December 27, 1963. ENGLAND, Epping. 16.00 Hrs. Pauline

Abbott, a trainee riding instructor, saw on the ground a white

object 8 foot long, 3 foot thick at the center, tapering to a

point at both ends, glowing slightly. A window on one side

glowed brighter than on the other. A "squelching noise" was heard

as the object rose in a shallow climb and flew horizontally for

100 feet before it was hidden from view.

Marks "like three large fingerprints pushed together into mud"

were found, forming a square with 8 foot sides within an 11 foot

circular depression which contained a 3 foot central circle.

Grass was found flattened. These marks were only 150 foot away

from the site of Case No 123, in 1958. (Vallee III and Eileen

Buckle in "The Scoriton Mystery" via Fred Merritt).

[PF Well following John Barrett's lecture at BUFORA's 25th

birthday party I know that anything connected with the Scoriton

mystery is probably a hoax.]

Case 165. 1964. CANADA, Ballantrae, Ontario. Claus Slade and a

friend found an area 50 foot in diameter cleared. At the outer

edge of the circle [a ring, PF ?] the ground was seared to a

crisp, leaving bits of charcoal. The outer circle [a ring ? PF]

was about 3 foot wide. Five years later, no vegetation grows.

Above the circle, tall 100 foot high oak trees still grow, but

the branches which hung over the circle are dead. It is estimated

[that] the time of the landing was June, 1964, as numerous UFOs

were reported in that area. (UFORC)

[PF, So just because "numerous" UFOs were reported in June the

trace just HAD to be related, didn't it !]

Case 166. 1964. U.S.A., West Unity, OHIO. Rings of sterile soil,

located near a tree line and in the corners of a field. (Brent


Case 681. April 23, 1964. U.S.A., Rivesville, WV. Mrs Ivah

Frederick observed a landed object for 15 minutes 600 foot away.

It was a disc with dome, revolving clockwise and humming. A

central la ding shaft was seen and a human-like figure 3 to 4

foot tall. Ascended vertically, 3 foot circular imprint found

(shaft) and footprints 6 to 8 inches long with four toes.


Press Release



Colin Andrews, author of the best-selling book "Circular

Evidence", and formerly from Andover, is flying out of America on

Tuesday (25th May) and will spend until 28th August in Hampshire

and Wiltshire, UK, with the largest gathering of international

scientists yet, to further investigate the Crop Circles [note

capitals, PF]. He will fly to make presentations in a number of

countries during the period, including Malta [now guess who he's

going to meet there ! PF], Ireland, Iceland and the USA. The

research project will include measuring the electrostatic field

and the Magnetic field at sites in Hampshire and Wiltshire. Very

secret projects involving well known mediums will also be

undertaken and has [sic !] been planned by Scientists who

discovered unusual markings and geometry on Mars [!!!!]. These

findings were presented to the United Nations in New York during

summer 1992, by Dick Hoagland - NASA consultant. Colin can update

you further when he arrives in the UK.

The following is a press statement just released by CPR

International, in America. It relates to Colin Andrews' address

to the United Nations, which has been officially announced for

21st October 1993 at UN headquarters in New York. Yours

Sincerely, Synthia Ramsby - Director U.S.A. (for Colin Andrews).

Mohammad Ramadan, president of the parapsychological group at the

United Nations who recently sponsored Richard Hoagland's

presentation to the U.N. on the Mission to Mars, met Colin

Andrews at the United Nations building in New York several months

ago. At the meeting, Mr Ramadan set Colin the almost impossible

challenge of discovering the meaning behind the crop circles and

ancient writings, the findings of which to be presented at the

U.N. in October. Many front line research contacts have already

been drawn up to assist in bringing together the vast data pool

of information by research groups and governments around the


Numerous governments have studied and collected information

related to the UFO and crop circles. They have clearly found it

difficult, if not impossible, to make any public statement on


associated with both. Unusual patterns, assumed as writings (i.e.

languages) have appeared in fields in the form of crop markings

and have been scratched on metallic surfaces following alleged

abduction cases. These etchings resemble markings on Sumarian

Tablets and petroglyphs on stone and rocks in several parts of

the world. The mammoth task is to try and place these together

and see if there is a cohesive message. Those who claim

extraterrestrial contact and communication with such through

symbols are to be part of a four month blitz on the world's data

bank. This may represent one of the first opportunities to bring

major information regarding such events into the realm of the

public through a non-political figure under the auspices of the

U.N. Ultimately a situation of such immense proportion must

certainly be addressed through the resources of this assemblage.

Careful assessment of all the facts known to us will be studied

before the presentation is given at the United Nations on 21st

October. The presentation will be attended by delegates and U.N.

officials and is open to the general public. For more information

Mohammad Ramadan at the U.N., tel. (212) 963-6506. I intend to

present the information at Reykjavik in Iceland on 3-7th

November. For more information [contact number deleted, PF] "


Well, if readers find this pack of lies amusing here are some

more - according to the bibliography attached to an article by

Andrews in "International UFO Library Magazine" (11684 Ventura

Blvd, #708, Studio City, CA. 91604, U.S.A.) :-

"Colin Andrews is one of the world's leading experts on the crop

circle phenomenon. Co-found[er] of the Circles Phenomenon

Research Group, his scientific investigations are responsible for

much of the current information available on the subject.

Andrews is a former senior officer in local government as Chief

Electrical Engineer with the Test Valley Borough Council in West

Hampshire, England. For three years Colin advised the British

Government on the circles phenomenon, supplying technical and

scientific reports to the Undersecretary of State for the

Margaret Thatcher government. As a result of his persistence, the

subject was raised in the House of Commons and, under Andrew's

supervision, the largest surveillance project of its kind was co-

ordinated with the British army to capture the formation of a

circle on film.

Colin Andrew became involved in the circle phenomenon in 1983

when he saw an arrangement of five circles in a natural

amphitheatre. Intrigued by the engineering aspects of creating

the circles, he began investigations with Pat Delgado, a retired

NASA engineer. In 1989, they co-authored "Circular Evidence", the

first book written on the subject. This was followed by their

equally successful book "Crop Circles, The Latest Evidence" in


Editorial Comments

Perhaps we should offer a prize to the reader who detects the

highest number of falsehoods in this outrageous trash ! Readers

will already know from reading Jim Schnabel's "Round in Circles"

that Colin Andrews was NOT a "senior officer" at Test Valley

Borough Council. Nor was he the "Chief Electrical Engineer".

According to legal correspondence in my possession he was the

"Technical Support Services Officer" not the "Chief Electrical

Engineer". In 1990 his boss, a Mr Orchard, was deputy to Mr

Burvil - the Director of Test Valley Borough Council Technical

Services Department (a proper Chief Officer Colin). Thus Mr

Andrews was two stages removed from a Chief Officer position. We

have also been informed by Gary Kandinsky - a District Auditor -

that at one stage Colin Andrews was actually a storeman.

Next Mr Andrews claims that he "advised the British Government on

the circles phenomenon, supplying technical and scientific

reports to the Undersecretary of State for the Margaret Thatcher

Government". This too is a blatant misrepresentation of the facts

by Mr Andrews. We accept that Mr Andrews may well have supplied

reports to the then Environment Minister Nicholas Ridley, but we

believe he was never officially requested to supply reports to

the Ministry and no evidence has ever been produced which proves

that Nicholas Ridley read Andrews' submissions.

Mr Andrews goes on to claim that "as a result of his persistence,

the subject was raised in the House of Commons". This is simply a

lie, for it was in response to questions from myself and Jenny

Randles that questions were asked in the Commons by Sir Teddy

Taylor (Con, Southend) and Michael Colvin (Con, Romsey and

Waterside). Andrews had nothing whatsoever to do with these


Lastly Andrews claims that he began investigating crop circles in

1983 and that "Circular Evidence" was the "first book written on

the subject". Both of these claims are also untrue - Colin

Andrews did not begin regularly visiting crop circles until 1986

(he has never published proof of his alleged visit to crop

circles in 1983) and the honour for writing the first book about

crop circles goes to BUFORA - for their 1986 report "Mystery of

the Circles".

Every now and then I receive a letter from someone challenging me

as to why I write so vitriolically about certain well known crop

circle researchers. Perhaps these same people can explain what I

am supposed to do when leading crop circle personalities just lie

and lie and lie again to get their name in the papers. Am I

really supposed to just sit back and let them get on with it ?

MJ-12 News

According to the Skeptics UFO Newsletter (published by Philip

Klass, 404 'N' St. Southwest, Washington D.C. 20024) "Nearly six

years after William L. Moore, Stanton T. Friedman and Jamie

Shandera released the famous "Top Secret/Eyes Only" MJ-12 papers,

which seemingly showed the U.S. Government had recovered two

crashed saucers from New Mexico, the Office of the Secretary of

the Air Force has officially designated and stamped them: "NOT AN


BOGUS DOCUMENT." The same stamp has been applied to other bogus

documents, referred to as "Aquarius" and "Snowbird", which began

to circulate even before MJ-12 was released.

The reason it took so long is because only the agency which

originates a classified document has the authority to declassify

it. CIA, NSA or the National Security Council, none of these

agencies felt it had the authority to act, or sufficient

interest. Finally, Col. Richard L. Weaver, Deputy for Security


Investigative Programmes in the Office of the Secretary of the

Air Force, decided to bite the MJ-12 bullet and buy an

appropriate rubber stamp. When UFO magazine contacted Moore for

his reactions, he reportedly responded:- "Since the MJ-12

documents are not Air Force, Colonel Weaver cannot label the

documents as forgeries".

The Thin Reaper

A Report on the Crop Circle Making Demonstration given by Jim

Schnabel at Pentlow, Nr. Sudbury, Suffolk, on July 3rd, 1993. by

Anthea Holland. C.C.C.S.

It was a hot, do-nothing kind of day. A day in which dogs panted

on porches and cats languished on garden walls. A day in which

Jim Schnabel cavorted in a corn field.

Well, not cavorted, exactly. In fact he struggled under a hot

summer sun and strained against the handle of a garden roller in

an effort to make a crop formation worthy of a professional


The day had been organised by Montague Keen, agronomist for the

CCCS. Jim Schnabel, at a talk to the Essex Crop Circle Studies

Group, had been asked (or was it challenged?) by Monty to visit

his farm in Pentlow, Suffolk, and create a formation which could

then be studied by the experts.

The names of those gathered expectantly to await Schnabel's

arrival were synonymous with the crop circle world: Busty Taylor,

pilot and photographer, one of the "originals"; Lucy Pringle,

"Human Effects" expert and CCCS council member; Stanley Morcom

and his wife, Suzy, both familiar faces where crop-circlers are

gathered together; Jo Holland and Una Dawood, both well known to

all those circle enthusiasts who descend on Beckhampton from

spring to autumn, and last, but not least, a character known as

"Bill Bailey", another (in)famous figure in the Circlefaking


Schnabel arrived late, and who could blame him ? The later the

start, the further the sun from its zenith and the less

uncomfortable his job would be. Or could it have been because (as

someone suggested) a late arrival creates a more dramatic

entrance ?

Schnabel had previously announced that he would probably attempt

a similar formation to last year's Silbury Hill "charm bracelet"

and some people had taken this to mean that he intended to create

a replica. Their disappointment when he said that this was not

his intention was obvious and seemed, to some, to prove their

theory that Schnabel's claims to have created the "charm

bracelet" were false.

Armed with a small rucksack, a few white tubular posts and a

plastic garden roller (which, surprisingly enough, did not melt

in the heat) Schnabel entered the field, climbed to the brow of

the hill and began his work. Peter Sorenson, armed with video

recorder, accompanied Schnabel throughout the day and recorded

dutifully his every move.

The view from the lawned area where most of us sat was poor, and

we contented ourselves with general discussions and chat. There

was, however, a tubular framed viewing/video platform, from which

a much better view could be obtained. From the ground it was

possible to see the crab-like movements used by Schnabel as he

formed the thin circle which was to link the various "charms",

and it was

interesting to note how many times he took the diagram of his

planned creation from his pocket to check on his next course of

action. (A point to note - this would probably need a torch in

the hours of darkness !).

Throughout the day it became apparent that the "audience" was

made up of a real cross section of Circle Watchers. There were

some who thought that all crop circles may be man-made but felt

that that in itself constituted a phenomenon; others who believed

that although some were man made there were still a large number

formed by other means; and some present obviously believed that

all crop circles were created by outside forces and seemed

totally unprepared to believe the claims of any who professed to

have been instrumental in creating any of them at all. This

latter group hardly deserved to be referred to as "investigators"

as their tunnel vision must prevent them from accepting any

evidence contrary to their personal beliefs. Indeed, one of them

was overheard to express the desire that she hoped the real

circle makers were watching and would strike Schnabel down.

In the course of the afternoon we were kept refreshed with cold

drinks and, later, cups of tea. Meanwhile, "Bill Bailey" bemoaned

his lack of fame and showed snapshots of impressive formations in

Northamp-tonshire which he claims to be the creation of his team.

Presumably he was hoping to pick up (or maybe pass on ?) a few


It was early evening but still swelteringly hot, when Schnabel

made his way from the field, his boyish, normally pale face red

with exertion and the sun.

By this time we had already been informed by those on the viewing

platform that the formation included a garden roller and a UFO

and we eagerly made our way up the tramlines and into this new


At first sight, it could only be described as "rough". However,

it must be remembered that the crop was still green and was over

six weeks earlier than the crop at Silbury Hill when the "charm

bracelet" was formed last year.

There was some evidence of layering but little more than would

occur naturally, and a bunch of flattened crop had fallen across

the standing corn - an event which would, in normal

investigation, point to a hoax. There were some right angled

turns, not common in formations, in which the corn had been

forced to follow the angle and had subsequently broken. The

white, dust-like substance found on the stalk of the corn was

obliterated in places, presumably where it had been trodden on,

but further investigation showed it also to be missing from some

of the undisturbed corn.

Before heading off for a, no doubt, welcome shower, Jim answered

a few questions, mainly put to him by Grant Wakefield (keeper of

the much worshipped "East Field" at Alton Barnes). Things got a

little heated until Montague Keen intervened, pointing out to

Wakefield that the afternoon was "not a confrontation". Wakefield

reluctantly backed off and Montague Keen hustled Schnabel away.

In this investigator's view the day provided a wonderful

opportunity to bask in the sun and enjoy the company. The

experiment, though interesting, was inconclusive, proving only,

to me at least, that yes, Jim Schnabel may have hoaxed the events

to which he lays claim, particularly given more time (he had

spent only three and a half hours in the field on this occasion),

less pressure and one or two willing helpers. Anthea Holland,


Then Came Ken Brown

A Study of the Cheesefoot Head Pictograms

by Matthew Lawrence

I first became interested in crop circles in 1986 when my father

and I were driving back from Petersfield one evening along the

A272 and through the Cheesefoot Head area. Passing the car park

and looking down into the now famous Devils Punch Bowl I was

amazed to see two flattened, ringed depressions in the cornfield

below us. We stopped the car and took several photos before

returning home.

The impression this left in my mind at the tender age of 14 was

incredible, so much so that I knew I wanted to get more involved

with the phenomenon in the future, but it wasn't until four years

later, when I had passed my driving test, that I got the chance

to investigate the subject in any depth.

In my eagerness to see the circles when they were fresh and not

damaged by admirers, I started to visit Cheesefoot Head first

thing in the morning from around the beginning of May 1990, just

before going to College in Winchester. It was on these morning

runs that I started to meet all the main researchers who were

doing similar sorties around this area.

These included Richard Andrews, Busty Taylor and George

Wingfield, but it wasn't until the appearance of the first circle

in the Punch Bowl that I met Pat Delgado and Colin Andrews. I

found this circle very impressive and wanted to go down into the

field to get a closer look, but Pat and Colin advised me against

this, warning that the land owner would not welcome my presence.

I took their advice and visited the circle at night and under the

cover of darkness measured the circle with my good friend Nigel


A few days later I decided to show a few of my other friends the

giant Doughnut circle and was driving up the road from the Percy

Hobbs pub when we noticed a massive crowd of people standing by

the side of the road at Chilcomb Farm. Pulling up behind a BBC

film crew's van we ran up to the boundary fence to see what all

the fuss was about. Looking over we could hardly believe our eyes

- there was an amazing pattern in the field, and unlike any

previous ones this one had pathways and boxes ! Our first

impressions were "its got to be man-made", but my thoughts were

changed when Pat Delgado later walked out from inside the circle

and proclaimed it

"genuine". I have great respect for Pat and his judgement of the

circles, after all he's been researching them longer than almost

anyone else in the business.

After all the fuss had died down Nigel and myself started to

measure and observe the formation. We noticed a few odd details.

Between the boxes and central path were a few bent stems of crop

which seemed to show where someone had walked into each box. We

ignored these putting them down to all the people who were

visiting the circle. Another thing we noticed was that each box

measured four feet in width and had a strip of crop running down

one edge in the opposite direction of flow to the rest of the


Just as we were about to leave the formation an old fellow with a

'cine 8' camera walked in filming. His name was Doug Bower and he

said he was a sound recordist of wildlife and had spotted the

pattern from the road. After chatting about crop circles in

general and asking us what we thought had caused this pattern he

drove off and left us. This was May 23rd, the same day that the

formation had been discovered.

On 24th May Pat Delgado rang to inform me of a new circle at

Morestead, near Cheesefoot Head. Nigel and myself visited the

circle later that day and it was here that Nigel discovered some

underlays of corn coming from the tramlines to the circle centre

and back out from the centre to the edge of the circle underneath

the main flow of corn. We both accepted these as part and parcel

of a genuine circle as we had heard them mentioned briefly by the


Over the next few months I discovered several circles in the

Cheesefoot Head area and found similar dimension correlations

involving four foot pathways and rings and similar ring and box

spacings and underlays. I also met Doug Bower and his friend Dave

Chorley on numerous occasions. They had the canny knack of

showing up just after the circles had appeared - give or take a

day or two.

On one occasion I visited Cheesefoot Head at approximately 11.00

pm. to measure up some recent formations and to my surprise found

Doug and Dave near the Punchbowl. When I told them I had come to

measure some circles in the dark due to problems with land owners

they wished me luck and departed after talking to me for half an

hour or so about tales of UFOs that people had related to them in

connection with the circles.

Through my involvement in the crop circle scene, Nigel and myself

became members of a local group called the Cheesefoot Head

Monitoring Group - a silly name as only Nigel and I seemed to go

up there on a regular basis ! I found the views in this group

interesting but realised that they really only wanted to talk

about UFOs and "cover-ups". It was only when Ken Brown joined the

group in late 1990 that I found someone who I could relate to in

terms of their views about the phenomenon. As far as I was

concerned he brought in some northern down-to-earth thinking and

sanity that the group needed to keep its feet on the ground.

1991 started with a bang at Cheesefoot Head with the second

"laddergram" of the year on Chilcomb Down fields. I discovered

this formation at approximately 6.00 am on 7 June and was almost

certainly the first to enter it due to heavy rain and mist

keeping people from firstly, seeing it very easily and secondly,

getting soaked by entering the field.

After taking a few photographs outside the pattern I walked into

the large ring and was surprised at what I found. There was a

very obvious "stepping" effect around the edges of the circles

and rings and also several broken stems especially around the

edges and centres, but most of all in the ladder section which,

although complicated in flow directions, was quite rough in

places (not "undamaged" as told by the "experts").

I also noted that the magic four foot dimensions were present in

all pathways and indeed some of the circles seemed to have

multiples of four as their dimensions, but not always. Mud was

also on the surface of some of the crop.

I brought up this dimension consistency on numerous occasions at

crop circle meetings but seemed to be wasting my time as everyone

else had gone metric and had not noticed ! So I decided that the

"circle makers" used Imperial dimensions; that was the extent of

my theory.

Then came Ken Brown.

Ken had also noticed the underlays and consistencies that I had

found, but by the end of 1991 - just days before Doug and Dave

went public - Ken had formulated a much more terminal theory from

the same evidence, so by the time the Doug and Dave story broke

he was 100 per cent sure they were telling the truth, and after I

had seen the research Ken had done into their story, so was I.

The fact that I had seen them up there on so many occasions just

after circles had formed was almost enough to convince me alone.

The nail in the coffin was the second "flower" pattern at

Cheesefoot Head. I studied Technical Drawing to "A" Level and

knew straight away when I saw this flower pattern how it had been

constructed and what a "cock-up" had been made of it. With the

radius dimension being measured incorrectly the creators had

stepped the distance around the circumference of the circle and

discovered that the points did not meet where they should have

done, thus creating thin arcs between several petals. This

formation also had the characteristic stepping effect on its

rings and "signatures" and also several underlays for which Ken

has a detailed model.

So it appears that Doug and Dave are telling the truth about the

circles in the Cheesefoot Head area. As far as circles in other

areas I cannot comment as it doesn't look that good for any other

pictograms wherever they may be.

As for plain circles, if they have underlays or stepped patterns

I would be very suspicious of human origin.

Do "genuine" crop circles exist ? We may never find out.

Matthew J. Lawrence, Winchester

Crop Circles in 1993

OK folks I have to confess that for the first time since 1985

I've managed to go through the whole of a summer without visiting

any crop circles ! However, my network of spies and informants

have sent me all the following cases:-

(1) There are plenty of large formations in Wiltshire and I've

had lots of calls about one large formation seen near the A34

junction with the M4. (2) There have been rum goings-on at

Codecote near Welwyn Garden City in Hertfordshire. There is a

field with several circles, a triangle plus multiple rings, UFO

sightings and all kinds of odd goings on. These circles have been

reported to The Crop Watcher by Marcus Parades and have been

publicised by the "Welwyn and Hatfield Times". (3) On my way up

to the IUN Conference in Sheffield on August 13th I noticed a

large circle in wheat (?) in full view of the M1 motorway.

According to Chris Haighton of Wakefield this was at OSGR 452632

and was about 50 feet across. (4) Bob Kingsley and others have

told me about numerous pictograms appearing close to the M25 and

other motorways. Perhaps we have some long distance lorry drivers

involved in hoaxing ? (5)

According to TODAY newspaper (August 6th) a giant "porn circle"

has appeared near Chequers - John Major's country residence. This

Penis was two hundred feet long and was literally in the field

next to Chequers itself (a subtle political comment perhaps ?).

According to TODAY a spokesperson at Downing Street doubted

whether John Major had seen this "thing" and that she "stiffly"

doubted that he might be amused. Perhaps someone in the Amersham

group (see CW10) read Clive Potter's article in CW13 ? According

to the Bucks Free Press (9 July) a large face has appeared in

stages in a field owned by Don Jarvis at Bury Farm, Amersham. The

face has a mouth, nose, two eyes and two ears. This is the farm

where the Amersham Group were caught red handed last year. (6)

Various circles appeared near Weymouth in Dorset just as I was on

holiday there in mid June ! Jo-Anne Wilder reported seeing

circles at Maiden Castle near Dorchester that same week. (7)

There is a pictogram shaped like a large wheel at Goodworth

Clatford which (according to the

infallible Andover Advertiser of 13 July) appeared on July 1st.

Apparently "The yearly phenomenon is back, bringing with it

groups of experts, religious fanatics and a language all of its

own". (8) There have been at least three formations in

Northamptonshire. The "Kettering Evening Telegraph" (the E.T.) of

6 August describes circles at Irchester, Burton Latimer and

Slipton. Expert Chris Bird is quoted dismissing "many" circles as

"pure hoaxes". All three are singles ranging from 40 foot to 59

feet in diameter. (9) Clas Svahn has rung me from Sweden to tell

me about the six formations appeared there in mid August. One was

definitely known to be a hoax whilst four others were suspected

hoaxes. I'll hold back on details about the sixth formation as

their are some interesting features of this case which are still

being investigated. These circles all received massive media

coverage in Sweden. (10) Jenny Randles tells me that the first

circle to attract widespread publicity in Northern Ireland

appeared at St Patrick's Hill near Drummock in County Antrim in a

barley field. Eight days previously an

orange/red light was seen in the early hours of the morning in

the same area. (11) Ian McCormack of Leyton in Lancashire has

sent me photographs of a single that appeared at Walton Hall

farm, Walton Le Dale, Preston, OSGR 553283 sometime before July

7th. Ian contacted the farmer but wasn't allowed access as the

farmer believed that the circle had been made by employees at a

local cinema. Ian considers this a little unlikely as the circle

is actually invisible from the cinema, although it is located

only 60 feet into a field adjacent to one of the busiest roads

into Preston. The circle is in a field of ripe barley and is only

the fifth Lancashire circle to be added to the CERES database.

Our thanks to Ian for sending this information. (12) There is an

intriguing new crop circle video that was first shown at the

Sheffield IUN Conference. It shows a series of flashing lights at

Urchfont south east of Devizes. The film was shot at night and

there is a good deal of camera shake. However, during the film

you can see cars passing by which gives some degree of scale. If

I wasn't such a huge evil skeptic I'd say these were disco lights

set up by the U.B.I. - they were seen by CERES' Peter Rendall at

this location during 1992. (13) Andy Collins' Orgone '93 Project

has produced some very interesting results, eg anomalous objects

recorded on Infra Red film, unusual VLF signals and anomalous

fluctuations in background radiation counts. Jenny and I await

the publication of a full report on these commendable experiments

with great interest. For a copy of a preliminary newsletter

describing this work write to ABC Books, PO Box 189, Leigh-on-

Sea, Essex SS9 1NF or ABC Books, St Aldhelm, 20 Paul Street,

Frome, Somerset, BA11 1DX. Magazine News

GEM is out with an entirely new format. Issue 16 costs # 2.00 for

40 excellent pages containing more on John Michell's interesting

retirement from cereology, a review of Jim Schnabel's book "Round

in Circles" and a review of the Doug Bower's meeting in

Marlborough. Also includes reprints of John Michell's article in

The Oldie and Meaden in J.Met. Excellent value for money. Write

to PO Box 258, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL53 0ET.

The August 1993 issue of MUFON UFO Journal carries full reports

on Project Argus by Michael Chorost and Ralph Noyes (on

"luminosities") plus a comparison of British and Canadian crop

circles by Chad Deetken. Write to 103 Oldtowne Road, Seguin,

Texas 78155-4099, USA.

The Southampton UFO Group Newsletter contains more crop circle

info plus a list of formations at Hogs Back, Oadby, Herne Bay,

Meon, Avebury, Cherhill, Cheesefoot and Warminster. Write to

Steve Gerrard, 25 Weston Grove Road, Southampton, SO2 9EE.

According to the "Southern Evening Echo" of August 20th Richard


apparently claims that the formations at Cheesefoot Head are

"genuine". Of course they are Richard...

Fortean Times no 70 has an alternative review of Jim Schnabel's

"Round in Circles" but little else on crop circles. Probably a

wise decision Bob !

Rumours and Rumours of Rumours

Jenny Randles works for MBF Services near Marlborough, her

treachery will not go un-noticed ... George Wingfield has been

seen at Another Waggon and Horses, he was not amused ... The

Greatest Conspiracy in British UFO History has been put into

Action ... Arthur C. Clarke's Mysterious World TV documentary has

been saved and extended ... Ken Rogers has left the UFO scene for



Crop Circles, A Mystery Solved has been completely updated and

republished in a second edition. Available from Robert Hale Ltd,

Clerkenwell House, Clerkenwell Green, London, EC1R 0HT, price #

7.99. Contains previously unpublished photographs of the Wokurna

(1973), Bordertown (1973) and Rossburn (1977) circles, along with

numerous historical cases, new eye witness testimony and a

detailed account of the crop circle crash of 1991-1993. Get it

please, Jenny and I had to accept reduced royalties to get this

evidence into the public domain. Thanks !

The Crop Watcher is an independent non-profit-making magazine

devoted to the scientific study of crop circles and the social

mythology that accompanies them. All articles are copyright to

the authors and should not be reproduced without obtaining

written permission from the authors. Articles appearing in The

Crop Watcher do not necessarily reflect the views of the Editor

or other contributors. Readers are welcome to submit articles for

publication. Offers of exchange magazines are always welcome.


The Crop Watcher is published six times a year and costs # 1.50

to UK subscribers and # 2.50 to overseas subscribers. A full

year's subscription costs # 9.00 for UK subscribers and # 15.00

for overseas subscribers. Please make cheques payable to "Paul

Fuller" not "The Crop Watcher". Overseas subscribers should not

send cheques drawn on overseas banks as these attract a

commission of about # 10.00 each. Subscriptions can be sent via

an International Money Order. All correspondence should be sent

to 3, Selborne Court, Tavistock Close, Romsey, Hampshire, SO51



Chris Rutkowski -

University of Manitoba - Winnipeg, Canada

From (Chris Rutkowski) Sat Jan 15 16:00:29 1994


From: (Chris Rutkowski)

Newsgroups: alt.paranet.ufo

Subject: Crop Watcher #19

Summary: CW 19

Keywords: crop circles

Message-ID: <2h9lhd$>

Date: 15 Jan 94 21:00:29 GMT

Organization: The University of Manitoba

Lines: 3039


Crop Watcher 19 1993

Doug Bower at Neals' Meeting Yard, Covent Garden, London,

August 3rd 1993

Following Doug Bower's lecture at Marlborough the previous

Wednesday (described in CW18) this second meeting was held in

the amphitheatre at Neal's Meeting Yard in Covent Garden. This

summary of what took place is based on a tape recording of the

meeting supplied by one of The Crop Watcher's many spies and

agents. Sadly this second lecture was poorly attended, with only

about 35 people in attendance compared with nearly 100 at the

Marlborough meeting. In contrast to the earlier meeting the

Covent Garden lecture was a more abusive and disruptive affair,

largely due to the antics of Stanley Morcom, one of the original

members of the Centre for Crop Circle Studies. Morcom bought

himself and his subject no credit at all by engaging in repeated

outbursts and slanderous attacks. On two occasions Morcom openly

accused Bower and Brown of being "liars", an accusation which to

my knowledge he has not withdrawn.


The style and format of the lecture closely followed the

Marlborough lecture, as Ken Brown had wisely planned the meeting

by preparing written notes of what he was going to say. He again

repeated his main theme "Tonight is intended to highlight the

fact that corn circles were Doug Bower's original idea".


Doug Bower then repeated the statement he read out at the

Marlborough meeting. It read "I would like for us to go down on

the record for us to apologise to farmers and landowners, and

thank them all for the tolerant and good-humoured way - I hope

that's correct - in which they've viewed the escapades of two

middle aged pranksters who became obsessed with an idea - it was

nothing more than a practical joke from the start".

Ken Brown continued:-

"I don't ever want to criticise true faith, however much I might

disagree with it. I don't wish to make a fool of anyone's sincere

belief but I AM justified in criticising Colin Andrews, Pat

Delgado and Terence Meaden and latterly George Wingfield, of

course. But particularly all those who were around in the early

years of circle investigations who made no effort to be entirely

objective. It seems to me those so-called experts were everything

but objective in their research of the circles. To my mind they

all deserve the severest criticism. There was sufficient evidence

around for this subject to have been wrapped up, packed away and


completely in fact even before - well before - Colin Andrews came

on the scene in the mid 80s. "

"Anyhow, you can easily see, when Doug and Dave came clean in the

TODAY newspaper in '91 it was far far too late. Doug and Dave had

been swamped, overtaken. They'd become irrelevant to the religion

of corn circles. And because they themselves hadn't seen the

faith growing they were amazed their story wasn't taken

seriously. Just try to imagine yourself in their shoes. You tell

the truth, you KNOW its the truth, but the Pope and the Priest

and the

Parishioners will not give up their faith. But then why should

they ? Faith is not about reason. Faith is not about being

rational. Faith is [not] common sense. And much worse, Faith does

not like to be questioned. So when I first met Doug Bower and

Dave Chorley they still had no understanding of the diatribe

being hurled at them. But after I'd earlier provided a few circle

magazines and comments from a couple of lectures I'd been to

their eyes began to open. I could see that the TODAY newspaper

story gave only a brief and slightly distorted picture of a

period which must have lasted over 20 years since Doug and Dave

first met. Some of my more reasonable circle friends were raising

questions about how much of the real truth these two guys from

Southampton really were telling. I just happened to be there at

the right time and the right place. "

Ken Brown then repeated the claim that he made at the Marlborough

Meeting, that on the 28th October 1991 he presented Colin Andrews

and Pat Delgado with evidence which supported Doug and Daves'

claim. According to Brown Colin Andrews stated that "There are

probably only about a dozen circles out of all the circles we

have ever had that I can put my hand on heart and say they are

absolutely genuine". According to Brown Colin Andrews repeated

this claim in a telephone conversation with Ken Brown on January

18th 1993. Then it was Doug Bower's turn. "Well, as Ken has

already said to you, the thing that's upset us most of all is the

opposition that we've had from these people. The general public I

think - the majority of them anyway - accepted our story right

from the start when it arrived in the paper in September 1991,

but what was going on behind the scenes up until that time we had

no idea until Ken came on the scene and he told us more or less

about it. We only knew about four people which is the important

people - these are the people that are still in opposition to us.

I mean we've had nothing but insults over the telephone and in

writing. My wife has been insulted. Its been nothing but insults

ever since it all started in September '91. This is the thing

that upsets us most of all. As Ken said just now we were hoping

that the whole thing would have come to an end in September '91

they would have probably come up to us and shook our hands and

say 'Thanks very much for what you've done, we've made a lot of

money out of you and my God this is what's really behind it

all' - its the pounds, shillings and pence - this is all that

really matters. There was a statement only three days ago in the

Southern Evening Echo - that Pat Delgado and Colin Andrews have

now reached the 500,000 figure for his books -and translated into

four languages. So I mean I can see really why the resistance and

opposition has been put up towards us, they wanted to keep this

going. And anyone with an income such as that are not going to

accept our story."

Ken Brown then presented Doug Bower's own photographs of crop

circles from the early years - photographs of crop circles which

Brown claimed had never been reproduced in the crop circle

literature. He claimed that Doug Bower had numerous photographs

of such circles and that this proved that Doug must have made

these circles. He accepted the point that was made by Stanley

Morcom and another member of the audience that had there been

only one or two such photographs this would have proven nothing.

His point was that there were numerous such photographs dating

back to 1980-82 and that this was pushing coincidence beyond

chance level.

The Historical Photographic Evidence

Ken Brown continued: "Some people have said that Doug and Dave

must have copied an original idea - [They say] where did they get

the idea from? They must have copied the same thing somewhere in

their mind or seen somewhere - [This is] Not true. That's [a

photograph of] Tully. Tully was some circles made in reed beds or

circular impressions made in reed beds. The photographs - I've

blown one up there - is of a dished side - a curved side, the

reeds are bent in other words - curving in a little bit like the

side of a cup. So that's what Tully looked like. Paul Fuller

keeps coming up to me -and he came to Marlborough to bring out

all his photographs - Paul lent me all his evidential photographs

for pre Doug and Dave circles. All Paul Fuller's photographs are

blown down - blown down - pretty flat - not even with a slant on

like that - they are even more wind blown than this [Tully]. Paul

Fuller says there are plenty of circles pre the mid 1970s. I

don't deny that, but boy oh boy they're not circles as we know

them. Circles as we know them -our crop circles - since the mid

1970s are straight rigid sided affairs. They are not wind blown

with slanting sides. They are not dished like Tully was dished."

Readers are invited to comment on this claim. The 2nd edition of

"Crop Circles A Mystery Solved" (Robert Hale Ltd) carries three

photographs of circles which we believe disprove Ken Brown's

claim that Doug and Dave "invented" straight-edged crop circles

in the mid 1970s. These three photographs were taken in Canada

(1977) and Australia (1973). Doug and Dave have repeatedly

confirmed that they only created crop circles in Britain. There

is also a photograph of what looks very much like a sharply-

defined crop circle at Aix-en-Provence, South-East France, on

20th May 1977, in The Probe Report, Vol 3, No 4, April 1983.


Doug Bower was then invited to describe how he made crop circles.

He and Dave always wore Wellington boots with deep treads.

Apparently Dave Chorley used to be very concerned about the

damage their boots left in the standing crop but this would

normally be covered up by the circle they were creating. Ken

Brown stated that he thought it was "remarkable" that the crop

circle researchers had never noticed the tracks left by these

boots. Lucy Pringle remarked that she possessed photographs

showing tread marks underneath circles.

In response to another question Ken Brown stated his belief that

Doug and Dave had never made any "grapeshot" circles - the

smallest circles they had ever made were only 8 feet across

because the width of the security bar from Doug's shop was only

four feet long. In response to another question Brown dismissed

the claim that it was impossible to see where the tramlines were

in the dark without the use of a torch. He went on to state that

it was quite possible to walk through standing crop without

leaving a trail. Stanley Morcom confirmed this.

Doug Bower then explained that the centre of every circle he had

ever made displayed a clockwise circle. The only exception was

when making the outer rim. Ken Brown described how Doug Bower

had created the "illusion" of a spiral pattern by laying down a

sequence of straight lays. This method had been convincingly

demonstrated to him by Doug in the field. In response to a

question from the audience Ken Brown stressed that he had only

examined the Bower and Chorley method of laying circles and that

other groups of hoaxers undoubtedly used different methods which

produced different characteristics.

Doug Bower then explained that he had discovered that standing

crop was often knotted into small patches where the wind had

blown the crop to point against the direction he was pushing his

4 foot rod (the security bar from his picture framing shop). When

this happened it was much harder work to push the rod through

the crop as it had to be pushed at an angle. It was this angle

which contributed towards the eccentricity of the overall crop

circle. Sometimes this effect was so marked that Doug would have

to use a piece of string to mark out the rim of the circle so

that he and Dave Chorley could push the crop down into a more

neat circle. This was exacerbated if he and Dave Chorley began

making a circle from opposite positions within the initial eight

foot circle.

Ken Brown then prompted Doug Bower to repeat the story of "Von

Ryan's Express" first told at the Marlborough Meeting. It seems

that this story relates to the 1978 Headbourne Worthy circle -

shown on page 16 of "Circular Evidence". As Doug Bower states

this formation would certainly have been visible from the main

Winchester to Waterloo railway line. Again Dave Chorley's

Christmas Card that recorded this event was presented (Dave's

inscription read "Must be something big going on in Micheldever

tonight" - a reference to a remark by the ticket inspector at

Winchester railway station).

Ken Brown then stated that according to his calculations Doug and

Dave made 42 of the circles that featured in the 61 colour

photographs in "Circular Evidence", 27 of circles featuring in

the 52 colour photographs in "The Latest Evidence" and 34 of the

circles featured in the 68 colour photographs in "The Crop Circle

Enigma". [This makes a total of 103 out of 181 (57 per cent). Of

course some of these photographs are of the same formations so

this percentage is an inflated estimate of the actual percentage,


In response to a question from Alice Keen-Soper Ken Brown stated

that in his opinion any circle which postdated Doug and Daves'

first circles was by definition a man-made hoax. In response to a

second question from Lucy Pringle Ken Brown admitted that there

was no photographic proof that Doug and Dave made the circles but

that he and Doug were "baring our souls" so that people could

assimilate all the evidence that was available. A third member of

the audience [Chad Deetken I think, PF] pressed Brown as to why

he believed Doug and Daves' story simply because they had told

him they had made the circles. Brown retorted that there was more

than just their word, he had interviewed both men at length, had

discovered their own photographs of circles they claim to have

made in Doug Bower's scrap-book and had seen the result of a

demonstration which convinced him of the truthfulness of their

claim. Doug Bower responded to a further question about why he

and Dave Chorley made so many circles over such a prolonged

period in time. Doug Bower admitted that it had become an

"obsession" that was fuelled by the media publicity.

Ken Brown then prompted Doug to recount the early years of his

circle-making. Many of the points raised at this point in the

meeting had been raised at the Marlborough meeting so these

points will not be discussed here. The only new revelation

concerned Doug's own photograph of a previously unpublicised

quintuplet event at Cley Hill in 1983. In response to another

challenge by Chad Deetken Ken Brown pointed to the TODAY

newspaper's own photographs of Doug and Dave half way through

making their demonstration circle at Sevenoaks - the formation

which featured in TODAY's exclusive story which had been promoted

as genuine in such glowing terms by Pat Delgado.

Ilene Bower was invited by Ken Brown to describe how it was the

Alfriston formation of 1984 which alerted her to the fact that

Doug Bower was involved in something secretive. She was alerted

by the high mileage on the car, which Ilene noticed because she

did the books for her husband's picture-framing business.

Doug Bower went on to describe how he alone created the "first"

circle in oilseed rape - at South Wonston in 1987. He rejected

Chad Deetken's claim that he couldn't have made this circle

without damaging the brittle thick stem. Ken Brown asserted that

he had a list of 12 circles in 1987 which had not been made by

Doug and Dave but which must have been made by copycat hoaxers.

Later the audience were amused to learn that following Colin

Andrews' request for information about new circles Doug and Dave

would make a new formation and then telephone him with the news !

Flashpoint 1

The first flashpoint of the evening concerned a disagreement

between Ken Brown and Stanley Morcom over the so-called Swastika

formation. Ken Brown stated that the truth behind the appearance

of these Swastikas was difficult to unravel as Doug and Ilene

Bower were both convinced that Doug had made only the second

formation, the one positioned north of the A303 trunk road. Ken

Brown found this difficult to accept as it would imply that

another group of hoaxers made the original circle and that Doug

Bower then made the second formation less than a mile or so away

by sheer coincidence. At this point Stanley Morcom interrupted

and claimed that on a previous occasion Ken Brown had claimed to

him that Doug and Dave did not make either of the two Swastikas.

During the ensuing argument Morcom accused Brown of changing his

story and "lying" to him. Brown dealt with Morcom's attack in his

normal good-humoured way by admitting that he was actually an

"M.I. 5 agent". Whilst this amused the audience it did nothing to

deter Morcom's mounting disbelief in Doug and Daves' story.

Morcom renewed his attack by referring to Doug Bower's earlier

claim that he made most of his circles using the four foot long

security bar from his picture-framing shop. Morcom stated that

the 1989 Corhampton triplet displayed "seven or eight"

concentric rings with an average width of 2 foot 2 inches. Morcom

wanted to know how Doug Bower could make concentric rings 2 foot

2 inches across with a rod of 4 foot length. Ken Brown suggested

that the rod could have overlapped adjacent lays. Morcom himself

suggested that this effect could be produced if the rod was

pushed through the crop at an angle. Morcom then returned to the

controversy over the two Swastika formations and Brown concluded

by saying that he thought that even though Doug Bower could not

recall having made both Swastikas the facts suggested to him that

Doug Bower must have been responsible for both formations.

Flashpoint 2

Stanley Morcom again interrupted Ken Brown as he was discussing

Doug Bower's construction of the first pictogram at Chilcomb in

1987. Morcom challenged Doug Bower as to how he constructed the

"coffins". Doug Bower replied that he and Dave "jumped". Morcom

took this to mean that Doug Bower jumped ten feet in one go -

something Doug Bower had obviously not meant to imply. Ken Brown

correctly pointed out that the TVS newscast of this formation

showed that there was a trail linking the "coffins" to the rest

of the formation but Morcom demanded that Doug Bower answer his

question without Ken Brown's assistance. In the ensuing argument

Morcom twice admitted that he believed that "all" crop circles

were hoaxes. His questioning of Doug Bower to account for how he

managed to jump "10 feet" from the spur to the "coffins" then

became unnecessarily provocative and confrontational. Morcom

concluded the argument by stating that "I've got a feeling that

I've been told a lot of lies".

Flashpoint 3

Subsequently, when describing the Hazeley Farm Fields pictogram

both Morcom and Pringle challenged Ken Brown and criticised him

for telling Doug's story despite the fact that he had not even

been present when the circle making had allegedly been taking

place. Brown defended himself by stating that he had examined the

evidence at length with Doug and Dave and had managed to coax out

of Doug facts and events which Doug himself had not understood.


justified his method of presenting the evidence by stating that

he knew "more about Doug Bower's circle making than Doug Bower

himself". Lucy Pringle then asserted that despite the fact that

many circles may or may not be hoaxes she had still discovered

unusual effects inside crop circles that she could not account


Flashpoint 4

Doug Bower again stated his unhappiness with the way he had been

treated by the "so-called experts". For years crop circles had

been promoted as genuine then suddenly - once his story broke -

he and Dave Chorley were being dismissed as "frauds" simply so

that a few people could carry on making money out of his circles.

Stanley Morcom countered by pointing out that he had spent a

fortune investigating circles but Doug Bower never mentioned the

sacrifice he and others had made to research the phenomenon. This

only seemed to incense Doug Bower further as he forcibly pointed

out to Morcom that he and Dave Chorley had never asked Morcom to

spend money investigating their circles, it had been Morcom's

decision to spend the money. Morcom challenged Bower as to

whether his circle-making was intended to "fool" himself. "Yes -

all of you. We fooled you all!" was Doug Bower's triumphant

response. He continued, "My next hoax is going to fool the world

even more than this one". This ominous statement was met with

delighted applause from the


Stanley Morcom attempted his fifth attack of the evening when

Doug Bower described how he and Dave Chorley left "meteorites" in

some of the Stonehenge formations of 1991. Morcom appeared to

believe that Brown and Bower had changed their story but

eventually realised his error and withdrew his charge. When

explaining the "DD" signature Doug Bower pointed out that "Every

artist signs his own work". This immediately bought a question

from Chad Deetken as to whether or not any formation had ever

appeared with the "DD" signature which Doug Bower had not made.

Doug Bower replied that to his memory there was none but that

hoaxers had copied them before and it was therefore conceivable

that they might be adding fake "DD" signatures to add

authenticity to their hoaxes. This didn't satisfy Deetken or

Morcom and another argument arose. At the end of this argument

Ken Brown summarised the reasons why he and Doug Bower had

organised the meeting:-

"Things can get impossible with some people, I'm afraid. We're

getting to that stage where we're going to have to say what we

believe - and you're going to have to take it. Its no good taking

a point for the next fifteen minutes - all we can say is what we

have to say. We'll say what we have to say. If you don't like it

you can lump it. You know we really don't care. We have come

tonight out of good will, putting our money on the line. I'm

saying this from the heart, not knowing whether we'll get our

costs back. We are here to tell our story. Its only last week

and tonight we're going to tell our story as far as we're

concerned as after tonight I'm retiring from the corn circle

fraternity, totally. I have no more interest in it because I'm a

hundred per cent convinced that Doug is telling the truth, that

Ilene's telling the truth, that these circles, (sic) photographs

really are Doug's, that all this equipment is Doug's, that the

story is true and therefore to me, beyond a shadow of doubt, the

whole story is true that they started corn circles. A lot of you

people may disagree, you may have your own belief systems, you

may have your own reasons for disagreeing. That is no reason for

us to fall out, that's no reason for us to hammer a point for

ten/fifteen minutes .. we'll just have to agree to disagree, and

frankly I don't give a toss because I'm getting out of it, and if

you people want to go out in the fields swanning around, praying,

whistling, listening to sounds in the dark, seeing lights in the

sky, feeling better, feeling worse [that's] fine, I really don't

mind - its your life its not my life, and I don't wish us to fall

out about it tonight."

Stanley Morcom's attempt to respond to this statement was

objected to by the audience. Ken Brown then summed up how the

Doug and Dave story broke in August/September 1991. Finally, in

response to a question from Chad Deetken, Doug Bower admitted

that he and Dave Chorley had both made # 3,000 from TV

appearances and newspaper articles. At this point my bootleg copy

of the meeting finished. Thanks for the tape recording M.I.5.


The 1993 Independent UFO Network's Sheffield Conference

This year's IUN conference was held at Sheffield Hallam

University - formerly Sheffield Polytechnic - so unlike previous

years there was plenty of room for audience, speakers and the


bookstalls distributed around the hall. Both days began with a

dazzling video sequence of major UFO-related topics - the

Mandelbrot hoax, the NASA Shuttle [reputedly involved in a close

encounter with a UFO], the CIA, the Roswell newscutting, Bob

Lazaar, Secret Weapons, a Strieber entity, the Face on Mars, and

so on. Accompanied by Jean Michel-Jarre's atmospheric music this

was a superb piece of marketing which was met with warm applause

from the audience. The first lecture on Saturday was by Ole

Johnny Braenne from Norway, who described how the celebrated 1952

Spitzbergen UFO crash was nothing more than complete fiction. The

story was invented by a West German newspaper and never featured

in the Norwegian press. The original story was that six UFOs

were detected on radar and chased by the Norwegian Air Force. The

saucers crashed and were subsequently located half buried in ice.

The UFOs were blue/silver disks which were transported to a

Norwegian Air Force base where they were inspected by scientists

from the UK and the USA. Already we can see all the key motifs of

the early crash-retrieval reports - technologically superior UFOs

that have a peculiar habit of crashing, UFOs that show up on

radar, saucers being retrieved by the Air Force and then sent to

a "secret" base, internationally renowned scientists flying in to

examine the wreckage - exactly the same motifs which later

resurfaced in Moore and Berlitz' resurrection of the Roswell


>From 1954 the myth took on a life of its own as several

variations develop. Ole described four main variants, these were

[1] the rumour that in fact the UFOs were secret German

experimental craft, [2] that unknown non terrestrial metals were


[3] a French UFO article alleged that the saucer had been

retrieved by Canadian commandos and taken to a Swiss base, and

[4] a

Norwegian newspaper altered the location to Heligoland and added

a more detailed description of the interior of the craft. Ole

noted yet another parallel with Roswell. The craft was allegedly

composed of very tough material which could not be damaged.

Despite its highly dubious nature the Spitsbergen case was

subsequently promoted by a number of credulous but popular UFO

writers in the 1950s and 1960s. In "Behind the Flying Saucers"

Frank Edwards claimed that he had corresponded with the General

who oversaw the recovery operation. Ole had tried but failed to

track down this General and Edwards' correspondence. In 1968

Arthur Shuttlewood promoted yet another variation of the story in

"Warnings From Flying Friends". In 1973 the Condon Committee

tried to get to the bottom of the mystery by examining the UK

Ministry of Defence's files and correspondence. Nothing relevant

was found. There is no mention of a UFO crash in the Spitzbergen

local press for the whole of 1952. The Norwegian equivalent of

Who's Who contains none of the names of the military personnel

supposedly involved in the recovery operation in all of its

editions between 1912 and 1970. Military records contain none of

the names of the people allegedly responsible for the recovery of

the craft.

According to Ole in 1952 the Norwegian Air Force had only two

squadrons of Vampire jets - both of which could not carry enough

fuel to fly to Spitsbergen. Despite this overwhelming negative

evidence Ole had tracked down more than 200 UFO books and

articles which continued to promote the Spitsbergen crash as

fact. Ole's skeptical conclusion was that the entire story was

fabricated. This was a superb piece of UFO research which

deserves the highest praise.

The next lecture was Philip Mantle of BUFORA and the Independent

UFO network. This was another well presented lecture detailing

many of the more well known British UFO cases over the past

decade. Philip described his involvement in the Skipton hills

flaps of the early 1980s, Tony Dodds' celebrated photographs, the

York Minster Fire and the Peter Beard hoax. This was followed by

the Ilkley Moor entity photograph, the 1989 Abingdon UFO film

(which Philip suggested was possibly a Remotely Piloted Vehicle)

and the BVM photographic hoax from Hungary. Philip was at pains

to point out that many of the cases he had investigated turned

out to have mundane explanations and that he had always believed

the Gulf Breeze photographs to be hoaxes.

The next speaker was Hilary Evans, the respected Fortean writer.

The title of Evans' illuminating talk was "Whatever Happened to

Flying Saucers?". Evans began by stating that once upon a time

there really were flying saucer reports, but now all we have are

abduction reports. Why ? In the 1950s George Adamski's tales of

meeting blond-haired Venusians were dismissed by UFOlogists but

now such tales would undoubtedly be accepted by the UFO

community. Why ?

Evans went on to describe what is known as the "psycho-social"

explanation for alleged UFO abductions. Throughout history people

have looked to the skies for proof of divine beings - from

Biblical times through to H.G. Wells "War of the Worlds". From

the rise of Spiritualism in the Victorian period to the "golden

age" of science fiction epitomised by "Amazing Stories", a

hugely popular science fiction magazine edited by Hugo Gernsbach

in the 1920s. Evans talk drew heavily on slides of these early

tales of what the spacemen and their spaceships looked like, and

what they were capable of doing to mere mortals. According to

Evans these stories primed society to accept the reality of alien

intervention in human affairs which resulted in the mass panics

induced by the infamous Orson Welles broadcast of 1938 and

Kenneth Arnold's seminal sighting in 1947. Critically both events

were misinterpreted by the world and then seized upon by Ray

Palmer in his 1950s magazine "Strange Stories".

Evans' talk went on to examine the way the alien myth developed

following Ray Palmer's creation of the UFO myth. According to

Evans' perspective Contact stories such as Adamski's were based

on science fiction stories like Schirmer's "The Green Man". The

Apollo landings of 1969 triggered the massive increase in contact

claims of the early 1970s.

Evans suggested that Whitley Strieber's contact story was

originally presented as a factual account of a real flesh-and-

blood meeting with aliens but that later Strieber had changed his

mind and was unable to distinguish between his own fantasies and

reality. This led to a discussion of the Fantasy Prone

Personality, which affects 5 per cent of the population, and

Altered States of Consciousness. Evans believes that alien

abduction claims are the result of witnesses creating a socially

acceptable myth. This would explain for example why visions of

the Blessed Virgin Mary are only reported from cultures with

deeply held Catholic views. According to Evans UFOlogists are

guilty of reinforcing the alien abduction myth because they fail

to see the claim in its historical context. At this point in the

lecture I noticed Budd Hopkins slipping away in disgust.

Evans went on to explain that UFO abduction claims are made by

people who NEED to externalise their innermost crises. This is

proven by the fact that some abductees have later admitted to

inventing their claims for rather peculiar reasons. Carl Jung

foresaw the alien abduction claim in his 1959 book "Flying

Saucers", which was ignored by UFOlogists and misunderstood by

his peers. Evans demanded to know why the vast majority of

abduction claims were being made in white middle-class societies

in developed nations. This, he believed, was because such claims

were more acceptable in those communities than in other cultures.

Evans' lecture was another brave exposition of the psycho-social

model that met with somewhat muted applause. This was clearly not

the sort of material that the audience wanted to hear, but Evans

gave them a radically different perspective to that promoted by

most mainstream UFO proponents.

Next was Jenny Randles talking about "Wonderland" - a small area

in north Cheshire that has produced countless paranormal claims

over the past century or so. Randles admitted to being fascinated

by what has become known as "window areas" - areas where the

normal rules of time and space appear to occasionally break down.

The Cheshire window area has already featured in CW12 but this

lecture introduced a wide range of unusual phenomena that for

some reason appear to cluster in this small undistinguished area.

These phenomena include :

- alien contact claims dating back to the "Zomdic" case at

Runcorn in the 1950s, - several poltergeist cases,

- sightings of green fireballs similar to those in New Mexico

during the early 1950s and in East Anglia in the early 1980s, -

crop circles dating back to the 1930s and 1940s,

- accounts of meetings with fairies and pixies,

- a phantom monk,

- humming/screeching sounds at night [vortices?],

- close encounter cases involving police officers,

- UFOs that fade in and out of reality,

- time lapse cases,

- spontaneous human combustion,

- ghosts,

- car stop cases,

- the famous "Cow nap" case from 1978 (at the "Devil's Garden"),

and so on, and so on. All this evidence is presented in Jenny's

new book "Mysteries of the Mersey Valley" (Sigma).

It was interesting that Lewis Carroll, the author of "Alice In

Wonderland", lived in this area. Were his fictional stories based

on local folklore ? Did the area boast a history of paranormal

claims dating back centuries ?

Randles proposed that there is something special about this rural

area - something which Science should be researching not

ignoring. She challenged the audience to go away and search for

more window areas to study and understand. Let us hope the study

of such areas brings further clues about why apparently disparate

phenomena should cluster in this way. Is this clustering an

illusion due to sociological factors, or is there a common factor

in these "window areas" which occasionally affects the way

witnesses perceive the world ? This was a fascinating lecture

which took us straight to the heart of the anomaly problem.

Enter the Superstar. The public just love Budd Hopkins. Nothing

Hopkins says is challenged - not even the ludicrous tripe dished

up at the Sheffield Conference by one of the world's most well

known UFO authors. Hopkins began his unabashed promotion of the

"Linda" case by claiming that "We have reason to believe that

there are many other witnesses". Unfortunately - according to

Hopkins' reasoning - because the case hasn't yet been publicised

these witnesses have yet to come forward to confirm "Linda's"

claim that she and her children were floated into a giant

brightly lit UFO hovering above Downtown Manhattan at 3 am in the

morning. A colleague of mine was sat next to me and laughed out

loud at this absurd statement - sadly one of only a handful of

members of the 250 strong audience who knew the facts. At this

someone in front of us turned round and told us to shut up, "Who

are you ? Why do you people bother coming here ?". Why indeed ?

According to material in my possession Linda's real name has been

published in countless magazine articles whilst the case itself

has been promoted in "Omni", the New York Times, MUFON UFO

Journal and IUR, so why did Hopkins claim otherwise ?

Hopkins' lecture continued on its merry way, oblivious to the

major problems that have been voiced about the case by its

critics. Here are some of Hopkins' latest claims:-

- the nasal implant inserted into "Linda" 's nose by the aliens

has been recovered, photographed and examined in laboratories. An

intriguing slide was shown which purported to be a side-on view

of one of these nasal implants; - 3 independent video tapes of

the encounter allegedly exist [!!]; - several independent

witnesses claim that they saw the UFO but mistakenly thought it

was part of a movie with special effects [which rather

conveniently explains why they didn't come forward at the time of

the abduction to confirm that it "really" happened]; - "Dan" and

"Richard" kidnapped "Linda" in order to determine whether or not

she had webbed feet [apparently - according to "Richard" and

"Dan" this would be proof that "Linda" was actually an alien - in

fact it is surely proof that "Richard" and "Dan" know a great

deal about the alien

abduction literature than they are letting on]; - "Dan" has

subsequently had a nervous breakdown [presumably this means he

can no longer be contacted so that his story can be verified]; -

the UFO was so bright that there was "enough light for thousands

of people to see them", "the whole sky was lit up" [so why the

distinct lack of independent witnesses ?]; and - the UFO abducted

"Linda" and her two children and then crashed into the Hudson

River but didn't resurface [note the same motif as the early

crash-retrieval reports again]. A local coastguard unit failed to

pick up the UFO on its radar system.

At this point in Hopkins' lecture I have to admit I was laughing

so much that I stopped taking notes. This is the kind of case

which the Official Skeptics must take enormous delight in using

to discredit UFOlogists and the fascinating phenomena we study.

There are dozens of major objections to what is being claimed.

For example, quite aside from the fact that "Richard" and "Dan"

have only ever visited "Linda" [do they really exist], Jenny

Randles has informed me that there is a major problem with the

drawings which have been produced by "Janet Kimball" and "Dan".

"Janet Kimball" -if she exists - claims she was driving her car

over Brooklyn Bridge when her car stalled inexplicably. She

claims that she observed the abduction from this vantage point

along with other witnesses in stalled cars. "Dan" claims he was

positioned much closer, less than 500 feet away. Both witnesses

draw the "abduction" as if they were face on but in fact both

groups of witnesses were viewing the alleged event from different

angles. Why is this ?

It seems strange that two of the three major witnesses have only

ever corresponded with Hopkins - just as with the Gulf Breeze

hoax "Dan" and "Richard" could be fabrications by the primary

witness in an attempt to support her claims.

Problems exist over the distance between "Janet Kimball" and

"Linda" 's apartment block. According to Dr Willy Smith's

important article in IUR Vol 18 No 2 it would have been

impossible for "Janet Kimball" to have drawn the alleged sighting

depicting "Linda" 's hair at a distance of 1560 feet - because at

this distance human eye sight is incapable of distinguishing

such detail. This argument is vigorously contested in IUR Vol 18

No 3.

However, by far the most damning aspect of this celebrated case

is the fact that there are some very striking similarities

between the claimed "abduction" and the plot of a fictional

novel, "Night Eyes". These major problems with the "Linda" case

are so important that I have published a revised edition of the

controversial paper by Hansen, Stefula and Butler which has been

published on the MUFONET BBS. The original paper by Hansen et.

al. has been

challenged in very strong terms in both MUFON UFO Journal and

International UFO Reporter.

Despite the publication of these very negative findings the

controversy seems destined to continue for some time. However,

what is so sad here is that Budd Hopkins is actually a nice well-

meaning researcher who genuinely believes he is helping the

witnesses to come to terms with a real physical encounter with

aliens. Hopkins' research - quite understandably - has been

widely promoted on the international UFO lecture circuit and in

numerous TV appearances and newspaper articles. What can

UFOlogists do to persuade Hopkins that he is most definitely

wrong to accept the literal

interpretation of alleged alien abduction claims ? How much

damage is Hopkins going to do before the penny drops ?

In the crop circle business I have repeatedly criticised people I

can prove to be cynical and outrageous liars. With Hopkins it is

different as no one can doubt Hopkins' sincerity. What can we do


The final lecture on Saturday was by Linda Moulton-Howe on animal

mutilation cases. I admit that at this point I left the lecture

hall - I never did like blood and gore. According to people I

spoke to afterwards Moulton-Howe's lecture aimed to link crop

circles, alien abductions and animal mutilations altogether !

Perhaps this is what people want to believe about UFOs ?

On Sunday the first speaker was the Rev. Donald Thomas, someone

who has been involved in the UFO scene for many years. This was

basically a historical overview from someone who lived throughout

the 1960s and who also accepted the literal truth of what was

being claimed. Thomas' lecture featured classic case such as the

Lakenheath-Bentwaters multiple radar-visual military encounter,

the 1967 Police chase across Dartmoor [which has always been

dismissed by most UFOlogists and skeptics as a mis-identification

of the planet Venus, although I recall that it featured on the

front page of several national newspapers] and the alleged

landing of a spaceship at Broadlands Estate here in Romsey in the

mid 1960s. Giving the first lecture on a Sunday morning is never

very easy and Rev. Thomas' cause was not helped by the poor

quality of the tape recordings he had faithfully kept of major

UFO stories from this fascinating era.

I didn't make copious notes of the remaining Sunday lectures as

these were all basically repeats of earlier lectures at Sheffield

and elsewhere. Following Cynthia Hind's description and video of

an alleged abduction case from Zimbabwe there was more from

Linda-Moulton Howe on alleged animal mutilations by evil aliens

and much much more from Hopkins on the second greatest UFO

abduction case on record. This too was a scream !

Hopkin's new case involved a "nervous" young couple - named at

MUFON's July Symposium as "Sam" and "Jenny Washburn" and their

two sons. Hopkins met the couple after one of his lectures in

Brisbane, Australia in late 1992. They claimed that five days ago

"Sam", "Jenny" and one of their sons had all suffered nosebleeds

from the same nostril. For years "Sam" had suffered from a

terrifying recurring nightmare which had begun in childhood.

According to Hopkins these are both symptoms of repeated


Hopkins then presented his ace card. The Washburns had given

Hopkins a series of polaroid prints showing a playground scene

with their children playing on swings and slides. Four of the

prints were bright red and featured sand, sea and some palm

trees. According to Hopkins these photographs were taken pointing

directly at the sun so the bright red nature of these prints

won't surprise anyone with a basic understanding of photography.

Anyhow, the punchline was this. According to Hopkins these three

prints SHOULD have included the young couple and their children

but by some dastardly clever trick the aliens had managed to

abduct them by making them invisible just as the camera's timer

opened the shutter !!

Subsequently, according to MUFON UFO Journal, Hopkins subjected

both adults to regression hypnosis to discover what "really"

happened. According to Sam the family were approached by two

small silver balls which hovered above the beach. He saw Jenny

and the two boys sucked up into a larger area of brilliance. The

silver balls reminded Sam of earlier encounters with UFOs in his

early childhood [important clue here].

Jenny's testimony was more explicit. She recalls standing on the

beach and feeling something big hovering above the family. Then

she and her two sons were levitated into the UFO whilst Sam stood

on the beach holding the camera. Inside the UFO they were

approached by two small figures and separated. Jenny was then

subjected to the standard gynaecological examination. According

to Hopkins, the aliens were capable of abducting all four members

of the family by cloaking themselves inside a field of

invisibility which lasted most of an hour.

Of course this is all complete and utter nonsense but this didn't

stop Hopkins from promoting this as yet another proven case of

alien intervention. Just what can we do to stop this man ? How

much more damage is Hopkins going to do to witnesses before his

"respected" UFO research is exposed and condemned by the

professional psychological community ? Some of these witnesses

are children so what kind of psychological damage is Hopkins

doing to them ?

One final point. Cynics might also point out that polaroids don't

produce negatives so potential UFO hoaxes are less easy to

detect. Sadly despite his obvious sincerity Hopkins never stops

to think for one second about problems like this. By leaving

himself open to exploitation Hopkins has followed hundreds of his

predecessors -all of them "respected" UFO researchers - into the

valley of despair. Oh dear !

If you want to read the original promotion of this case see MUFON

UFO Journal Number 293, September 1992 (103 Oldtowne Road,

Seguin, Texas, 78155). If you want to see the critique of this

case by Don Johnson and Dr Willy Smith plus Jerry Clark and Budd

Hopkins' response to the controversial paper by Stefula, Butler,

and Hansen get hold of vol 18 nos 2 and 3 of International UFO

Reporter (write to the J.Allen Hynek Center for UFO Studies, 2457

West Peterson Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60659). I also recommend

that you obtain the excellent Journal of UFO Studies, Vol 1

(1989) from the same address (# 18 including p&p) as this

contains some important articles summarising the debate from both

the pro-ETH angle and from mainstream psychiatric/psychological


On a more positive note Paul Devereux presented another excellent

lecture covering earth lights, altered states of consciousness

and UFO window areas. Like Evans Devereux's position is that UFOs

are caused by natural mechanisms and processes rather than alien

intervention. There is a major university study underway in the

States examining the effect of what might be natural light

phenomena on the brain. Some of this field research is based at

Marfa in Texas, a location with a long established folklore of

nocturnal lights. Interestingly our own Professor Ohtsuki visited

this location in 1987 as part of his ball lighting research.

Devereux also very properly withdrew his earlier promotion of the

Hucker lights ["Earth Lights Revelation" page 135-6] which he now

believes to be car headlights, a commonly-suggested explanation

for anomalous light phenomena.

During the break we were treated to the Alton Barnes video film

reported in CW18 plus a sensational film of an out-of-focus UFO

[an aircraft covered with bright lights ?] just before it

allegedly crashed into a forest in Ottowa, Canada in either

November 1989 or 1991. This is the "Guardian" film which has

subsequently been shown on Breakfast Time TV. Apparently it was

sent anonymously to Bob Oeschler by a "Commander X" - just like

the bogus MJ-12 documents were seeded into the UFO community by

someone with a warped sense of humour. I spoke to a young

Canadian UFOlogist during the interval who told me that he had

personally visited the site of the alleged UFO crash but found no

evidence of ground traces that might confirm the story. It seems

that nothing has been learnt from the disasters of promoting

Roswell and Spitsbergen. Readers will recall that Bob Oeschler's

previous involvement in major UFO stories has been widely

criticised by numerous UFO researchers, who have variously

dismissed him as a "crank", a "charlatan" and "a

confidence trickster". Times don't change do they !

All in all I enjoyed the Sheffield Conference. It was fun ripping

the alien intelligence believers to shreds with their daft

theories and sensational research. Once again it seems that

UFOlogy is actually a composite of two directly opposed

subjects - a battle ground between the religious fervour of the

uncritical all-

believing alien intelligence movement and the sociological/folk-

lore approach of the more rational geo-physical/psycho-social

movement. As I reported in my review of the 1992 Conference in

UFO Brigantia, what are UFOlogists doing by wedding these two

diametrically opposed subject areas together ? How can we cut

ourselves away from the popular presentation of the UFO evidence

? Isn't it time we publicly rejected the alien intelligence

movement and called ourselves and our subject areas something

else ?

Alleged Alien Abductions

The "Linda" Case

I hope readers will bear with me as I make my first trip into the

alien abduction "debate". I do so for a number of reasons.

Firstly the following report gives a very different perspective

to the claims being made by Hopkins and his supporters, and to my

knowledge has not yet been published in Britain. Secondly there

is much to be learnt from this case about the way UFOlogists

repeatedly make critical errors by not asking the right

questions. Thirdly this case demonstrates the serious problems of

accepting the literal reality of highly exotic claims and then

refusing to continually reappraise the case as new evidence

emerges. And lastly because if the allegations in this paper are

true then some proponents of this case have gone down that dark

dingy lane of suppressing negative evidence - the same lane that

certain crop circle researchers disappeared down several years


This article first appeared on the MUFON BBS system in June. It

immediately sparked something of an argument between the system

operator - John Komar - and Sheldon Wernikoff - remember him ?

Wernikoff features in Meaden's "Circles From The Sky" (page 200).

It appears that John Komar decided to restrict circulation of

this material because of its controversial attack on Budd

Hopkins, Jerry Clark and MUFON's Walt Andrus - arguably the three

most influential US UFOlogists. Wernikoff argued that despite its

controversial nature and stinging attacks the paper had a right

to be posted as it contained important new evidence that was

relevant to the debate. John Komar disagreed but eventually

backed down. Komar recently resigned as the System Operator for

the MUFONET BBS claiming that it was for business reasons. I

won't bore readers with all the details of this apparent

censorship. Instead, here is one of the world's most notorious

UFO articles of recent years: -To: Those Interested in the UFO


From: Joseph J. Stefula, Richard D. Butler and George P. Hansen.

Date: 08 January 1993 Re: Budd Hopkins' case of the abduction

of Linda Napolitano. Enclosed is our report on the much acclaimed

case of the UFO abduction of Linda Napolitano. We invite your


Hopkins' claims have generated enormous publicity and have been

mentioned in the New York Times, Omni, the Wall Street Journal,

and Paris Match, among others. As such, this case is likely to

have a substantial impact on the field of ufology.

Leadership in both the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) and the J.

Allen Hynek Center for UFO Studies (CUFOS) aggressively opposed

our investigation, and both previously refused to publish our

criticisms. This raises grave questions about the scientific and

journalistic integrity of MUFON and CUFOS.

Those organizations have many members, and we are unable to

provide more than a few copies of this paper to others. We ask

you to help us with the distribution. Please feel free to make

copies of this article, post it on electronic bulletin boards,

and print it in periodicals.

A Critique of Budd Hopkins' Case of the UFO Abduction of Linda


by Joseph J. Stefula, Richard D. Butler, and George P. Hansen

ABSTRACT: Budd Hopkins has made a number of public presentations

of a purported UFO abduction case with multiple witnesses. The

primary abductee is Linda Napolitano, who lives in an apartment

building on the lower east side of Manhattan (New York City).

She claims to have been abducted by extraterrestrial aliens from

her 12th floor apartment in November 1989. It is claimed that

three witnesses in a car two blocks away observed Linda and alien

beings float out of a window and ascend into a craft. One

alleged witness was United Nations Secretary General Javier Perez

de Cuellar. It is also claimed that a woman on the Brooklyn

Bridge observed the abduction. Linda has reported nose bleeds,

and one X-ray displays an implant in her nose.

To date, Hopkins has provided no full, detailed written report,

but he did publish a couple five page articles in the September

and December 1992 issues of the Mufon UFO Journal and made a

presentation at the 1992 MUFON symposium. We have made use of

that information as well as records from other presentations, and

we have interviewed the abductee. A number of serious questions

arose from our examination. The case has many exotic aspects,

and we have identified a science fiction novel that may have

served as the basis for elements of the story.

Several prominent leaders in ufology have become involved, and

their behaviour and statements have been quite curious. Some

have aggressively attempted to suppress evidence of a purported

attempted murder. The implications for the understanding of

ufology are discussed.

Budd Hopkins is the person most responsible for drawing attention

to the problem of the extraterrestrial (ET) abduction experience.

His efforts have been instrumental in stimulating both media

attention and scientific research devoted to the problem. He has

written two popular books (Missing Time, 1981, and Intruders,

1987), established the Intruders Foundation, and has made

innumerable appearances at conferences and in the media.

Although Hopkins is neither a trained therapist, an academic, nor

a scientist, he has involved such people in his work. John E.

Mack, M.D., a Pulitzer Prize winner and former head of the

psychiatry department at Harvard Medical School, has praised

Hopkins' work and acknowledged his indebtedness to him (Mack,

1992a, 1992b). Hopkins has collaborated with university

professors in co-authoring an article in the book Unusual

Personal Experiences (1992), which was sent to 100,000 mental

health professionals. He has testified as an expert witness at a

hearing regarding the medical competence of a physician who

claims to have been abducted (McKenna, 1992). Because of such

strong endorsements and

impressive affiliations, and because of his untiring work on

behalf of abductees, Hopkins has become the single most visible

figure in the UFO abduction field. His contributions, positive

or negative, will be quickly noticed by those inside and outside


Last year, Hopkins made a number of public presentations about a

spectacular UFO abduction case occurring in November 1989 and

having multiple witnesses. The primary abductee was Linda

Napolitano, a woman living on the 12th floor of a high-rise

apartment building in lower Manhattan (New York City) [Hopkins

has previously used the pseudonym "Linda Cortile" in this case].

It is claimed that three witnesses in a car two blocks away

observed Linda and three ET aliens emerge from a window and

ascend into a craft. Further it is claimed that a woman who was

driving across the Brooklyn Bridge also saw the event.

The case has generated enormous interest and drawn international

attention. It has been discussed in the Wall Street Journal

(Jefferson, 1992), Omni (Baskin, 1992), Paris Match (De Brosses,

1992), the New York Times (Sontag, 1992), and Hopkins and

Napolitano have appeared on the television show Inside Edition.

The Mufon UFO Journal labelled it "The Abduction Case of the

Century" (Stacy, 1992, p. 9). Even the technical magazine

ADVANCE for Radiologic Science Professionals carried a discussion

of Linda's nasal implant (Hatfield, 1992). We should expect

continuing coverage of the affair not only in the UFO press but

also in the major media.

In a short article previewing his 1992 MUFON symposium

presentation, he wrote: "I will be presenting what I believe to

be the most important case for establishing the objective reality

of UFO abductions that I have yet encountered" (Hopkins, 1992, p.

20). During his lecture at the symposium he stated: "This is

probably the most important case I've ever run into in my life"

(tape recorded, July 1992). In his abstract for the

Massachusetts Institute of Technology Abduction Study Conference

held in June 1992 he wrote: "The importance of this case is


immeasurable, as it powerfully supports both the objective

reality of UFO abductions and the accuracy of regressive hypnosis

as employed with this abductee." Because of Hopkins' renown, and

because of his evaluation, this case warrants our careful



The first two authors had learned of the case before Hopkins had

spoken publicly of it, and they decided to monitor its progress.

They regularly briefed the third author as their investigation

progressed. As the affair became publicized, all three became

concerned about the long term effect it might have on abduction


For several years Richard Butler attended Hopkins' informal

meetings organized for abductees and abduction researchers.

Butler became familiar with the case during those meetings, and

he invited Stefula to a gathering in early October 1991. At the

meeting, Hopkins outlined the case, and afterward, Stefula had a

chance to chat with Linda about her experiences. Butler and

Stefula gave Linda their telephone numbers. She was advised that

if she needed any assistance she could contact them. Stefula

told her that he had numerous contacts in federal and state law

enforcement agencies that could be of aid to her. The same

information was provided to Hopkins.

On January 28, 1992, Linda requested a meeting with Richard

Butler, and on February 1, 1992, Linda, Stefula and Butler met in

New York City, and Linda provided additional details about her

experiences (described below). During that meeting, she asked

them not to inform Hopkins of their discussions. At the 1992

MUFON convention in Albuquerque, New Mexico in July, both Hopkins

and Linda appeared on the podium and presented the case. Stefula

attended the convention and heard the talk, and disturbing

questions arose. Some of the statements directly contradicted

what Linda had earlier told Stefula and Butler. We contacted

Hopkins in an attempt to resolve these matters, but he declined

to meet with us, saying that he didn't want to discuss the case

until his book manuscript was submitted. Despite his initial

reluctance, eventually a meeting was arranged on October 3, 1992

at Hopkins' home, and a few more details then emerged.


In order to compile this summary of alleged events, we have

relied upon Hopkins' and Linda's talks from the podium of the

1992 MUFON symposium, on our interviews with Linda, on Hopkins'

talk at the Portsmouth, New Hampshire UFO conference, September

13, 1992, and Hopkins' two five-page articles in the September

and December issues of the Mufon UFO Journal.

In April 1989 Hopkins received a letter from Linda Napolitano, a

resident of New York City. Linda wrote that she had begun

reading his book Intruders and had remembered that 13 years

earlier she had detected a bump next to her nose. It was

examined by a physician who insisted that she had undergone nasal

surgery. Linda claimed that she never had such surgery, and she

even checked with her mother, who confirmed that impression.

Hopkins took an interest in the case because there was a

potential for medical evidence and because Linda lived relatively

close to Hopkins, which facilitated their meeting. Linda visited

Hopkins and discussed her past experiences with him. She

recalled some pertinent earlier events in her life but believed

that she was no longer directly involved with any abduction

phenomena. Linda then began attending meetings of Hopkins'

support group for abductees.

On November 30, 1989, Linda called Hopkins and reported that she

had been abducted during the early morning hours of that day, and

she provided some details. A few days later, she underwent

regressive hypnosis, and Linda remembered floating out of her

apartment window, 12 stories above the ground. She recalled

ascending in a bluish-white beam of light into a craft which was

hovering over the building.

Richard and Dan

Over a year later (February 1991), Hopkins received a letter

signed with the first names, Richard and Dan. (We have no hard

evidence that "Richard" and "Dan" actually exist. In order to

avoid over-burdening the reader, we will typically omit the word

"alleged" when mentioning them.) The letter claimed that the two

were police officers who were under cover in a car beneath the

elevated FDR Drive between 3:00 and 3:30 a.m. in late November

1989. Above a high-rise apartment building, they observed a

large, bright reddish-orange object with green lights around its

side. They wrote that they saw a woman and several strange

figures float out a window and up into the object. Richard and

Dan said that they had come across Hopkins' name and decided to

write to him. They went on to say that they were extremely

concerned about her well being, wanted to locate the woman, talk

to her, and be assured that she was alive and safe. The two also

mentioned that they could identify the building and window from

which she emerged.

After receiving the letter, Hopkins promptly called Linda and

told her that she might expect a visit from two policemen. A few

days later, Linda telephoned Hopkins to tell him that she had

been visited by Richard and Dan. When they had knocked on her

door, introducing themselves as police officers, she was not too

surprised because she reports that police frequently canvass her

apartment complex looking for witnesses to crimes. Even with

Hopkins' prior call, she did not expect Richard and Dan to

actually appear. After they arrived and entered her home, there

was an emotional greeting, and they expressed relief that she was

alive. However, Richard and Dan were disinclined to meet with or

talk to Hopkins, despite the fact that they had written him

earlier and despite Linda's entreaties to do so. Richard asked

Linda if it was acceptable for them to write out an account of

their experience and then read it into a tape recorder. She

agreed, and a couple weeks later Hopkins received a tape

recording from Richard describing their experience.

Some time thereafter, Hopkins received a letter from Dan giving a

bit more information. The letter reported that Richard had taken

a leave of absence because the close encounter had been so

emotionally traumatic. Dan also mentioned that Richard secretly

watched Linda. (This information is from Hopkins' oral

presentation at the 1992 MUFON symposium in Albuquerque. At the

Portsmouth, New Hampshire conference, Hopkins said that he had

received a letter from Richard saying that Dan was forced to take

of leave of absence. It is not clear if Hopkins misspoke at some

point, or whether both individuals took leaves of absence.)

Hopkins received another letter from Dan which said that he and

Richard were not really police officers but actually security

officers who had been driving a very important person (VIP) to a

helicopter pad in lower Manhattan when the sighting occurred.

The letter claimed that their car stalled, and Richard had pushed

it, parking it beneath the FDR Drive. According to Dan, the VIP

had also witnessed the abduction event and had become hysterical.

The Kidnappings

Linda claimed that in April of 1991 she encountered Richard on

the street near her apartment. She was asked to get into a car

that Dan was driving, but she refused. Richard picked her up

and, with some struggle, forced her into the vehicle. Linda

reported that she was driven around for 3 1/2 hours, interrogated

about the aliens, and asked whether she worked for the

government. She also said that she was forced to remove her shoes

so they could examine her feet to determine whether she was an ET

alien (they later claimed that aliens lack toes). Linda did

remember another car being involved with the kidnapping, and

under hypnotic regression she recalled the license plate number

of that car, as well as part of the number of the car in which

she rode. Hopkins reports that the numbers have been traced to

particular "agencies" (he gave no further details).

At the MUFON symposium, Linda was asked if she had reported the

kidnapping to the police. She said that she had not and went on

to say that the kidnapping was legal because it had to do with

national security.

In conversations with Butler in early 1992, Linda had expressed

concerns about her personal safety. A meeting was arranged with

Stefula because of his background in law enforcement. During the

afternoon and early evening of February 1, the three met in New

York City, and Linda described further details of the


She reported that on the morning of October 15, 1991, Dan

accosted her on the street and pulled her into a red Jaguar

sports car. Linda happened to be carrying a tape recorder and

was able to surreptitiously record a few minutes of Dan's

questioning, but he soon discovered and confiscated it. Dan drove

to a beach house on the shore of Long Island. There he demanded

that Linda remove her clothes and put on a white nightgown,

similar to the one she wore the night of the abduction. He said

he wanted to have sex with her. She refused but then agreed to

put on the nightgown over her clothes. Once she did, Dan dropped

to his knees and started to talk incoherently about her being the

"Lady of the Sands." She fled the beach house, but Dan caught

her on the beach and bent her arm behind her. He placed two

fingers on the back of her neck, leading Linda to believe that it

was a gun. He then forced her into the water and pushed her head

under twice. He continued to rave incoherently, and as her head

was being pushed under for the third time, she believed that she

would not come up again. Then, a "force" hit Dan and knocked him

back onto the beach. She started to run but heard a sound like a

gun being cocked. She looked back and saw Dan taking a picture

of her (Linda mentioned that pictures from the beach were

eventually sent to Hopkins). She continued running, but Richard

appeared beside her, seemingly out of nowhere. He stopped her

and convinced her to return to the beach house and told her that

he would control Dan by giving him a Mickey Finn. She agreed.

Once inside, Richard put Dan in the shower to wash off the mud

and sand from the beach. This gave Linda a chance to search the

premises; she recovered her cassette tape and discovered

stationery bearing a Central Intelligence Agency letterhead.

In a brief conversation on October 3, 1992, Hopkins told Hansen

that Linda came to him shortly after she arrived back in

Manhattan after the kidnapping. She was dishevelled, had sand in

her hair, and was traumatized by the experience.

Further Contacts with Richard and Dan

During the February 1 meeting with Butler and Stefula, Linda

reported that she had met Richard outside a Manhattan bank on

November 21, 1991. He told her of Dan's deteriorating mental

condition. During the Christmas season, Linda received a card

and a three page letter from Dan (dated 12/14/91). The letter

bore a United Nations stamp and postmark (the UN building in New

York has a post office which anyone can use). Dan wrote that he

was in a mental institution and was kept sedated. He expressed a

strong romantic interest in Linda. Some of his remarks suggested

that he wanted to kidnap her, take her out of the country, and

marry her; Linda seemed alarmed by this (she gave a copy of the

letter to Stefula and Butler).

Linda also asserted that on December 15 and December 16, 1991,

one of the men had tried to make contact with her near the

shopping area of the South Street Seaport. He was driving a

large black sedan with Saudi Arabian United Nations license

plates. During the first incident, to avoid him, Linda reported

that she went into a shop. The second day a similar thing

happened, and she stood next to some businessmen until he left

the area.

The Third Man

At the February 1 meeting, Linda mentioned that Hopkins had

received a letter from "the third man" (the VIP), and she was

able to repeat entire sentences from this letter, seemingly

verbatim. It discussed ecological danger to the planet, and

Linda indicated that aliens were involved in ending the Cold War.

The letter ended with a warning to Hopkins to stop searching for

"the third man" because it could potentially do harm to world


Linda also related a few more details of her November 1989

abduction. She said that the men in the car had felt a strong

vibration at the time of the sighting. Linda also claimed that

in subsequent hypnotic regressions she recalled being on a beach

with Dan, Richard, and the third man, and she thought somehow she

was being used by the aliens to control the men. She

communicated with the men telepathically and said that she felt

that she had known Richard prior to the November 1989 abduction,

and she suggested that they possibly had been abducted together

previously. We also learned that the third man was actually

Javier Perez de Cuellar, at that time Secretary General of the

United Nations. Linda claimed that the various vehicles used in

her kidnappings had been traced to several countries' missions at

the UN. At the Portsmouth, New Hampshire conference, Hopkins

spoke of the third man saying: "I am trying to do what I can to

shame this person to come forward."

Witness on the Brooklyn Bridge

In the summer of 1991, a year and a half after the UFO abduction,

Hopkins received a letter from a woman who is a retired telephone

operator from Putnam County, New York (Hopkins has given this

woman the pseudonym of Janet Kimble). Hopkins did not bother to

open the letter, and in November 1991, he received another one

from her marked on the outside "CONFIDENTIAL, RE: BROOKLYN

BRIDGE." The odd outside marking and the fact that she had

written two letters, seem to have raised no suspicions in

Hopkins' mind. The woman, a widow of about sixty, claimed to

have been driving on the Brooklyn Bridge at 3:16 a.m., November

30, 1989. She reported that her car stopped and the lights went

out. She too saw a large, brightly lit object over a building;

in fact, the light was so bright that she was forced to shield

her eyes, though she was over a quarter mile away. Nevertheless,

she claimed to have observed four figures in fetal positions

emerge from a window. The figures simultaneously uncurled and

then moved up into the craft. Ms. Kimble was quite frightened by

the event, and people in cars behind her were "running all around

their cars with theirs (sic) hands on their heads, screaming from

horror and disbelief" (quoted in Hopkins, 1992d, p. 7). She

wrote: "I have never travelled back to New York City after what I

saw and I never will again, for any reason" (Hopkins, 1992d, p.

5). Despite her intense fear and all the commotion, she had the

presence of mind to rummage through her purse to find her

cigarette lighter to illuminate her watch in order to determine

the time.

Hopkins has interviewed this woman in person and over the phone.

The woman claimed to have obtained his name in a bookstore; she

called the Manhattan directory assistance for his telephone

number and then looked up his address in the Manhattan White

Pages. She alleges that she was reticent about speaking of the

incident and had only told her son, daughter, sister, and

brother-in-law about the event.

The Nasal X-ray

In November 1991 a doctor, whom Hopkins describes as "closely

connected with Linda," took an X-ray of Linda's head because she

knew about the story of the nasal implant and because Linda

frequently spoke of the problem with her nose. The X-ray was not

developed immediately. A few days later the doctor brought it to

Linda but was very nervous and unwilling to discuss it. Linda

took it to Hopkins, who showed it to a neurosurgeon friend of

his. The neurosurgeon was astounded; a sizeable, clearly non-

natural object could be seen in the nasal area. Hopkins has

shown a slide of the X-ray during his presentations, and the

implant is strikingly apparent, even to a lay audience. The

object has a shaft

approximately 1/4 inch long with a curly-cue wire structure on

each end.

Other Unusual Aspects of the Case

During our meeting with Linda on February 1, she gave us

additional miscellaneous details that might be pertinent. We

were told that she believed that she was under surveillance and

described a light silver-gray van that had parked near her

apartment. She also claimed that she had once been a

professional singer and the lead on a hit record, but she had

lost her singing voice one day while in the shower. Linda

mentioned that she was given to understand that her blood was

quite unusual. A doctor had informed her that her red blood

cells did not die, but instead they rejuvenated. She wondered

whether this might be due to an alien influence; some time later

she attempted to locate the doctor but was unable to do so.

Linda seemed to imply that she now believed that she was part

alien or somehow worked with the aliens. Linda also told us that

she had an agreement with Budd Hopkins to split equally any

profits from a book on the case.


There are a number of obvious but unanswered questions that raise

immediate doubts about the credibility of the case.

The most serious problem is that the three alleged principal

corroborating witnesses (Richard, Dan, and Perez de Cuellar) have

not been interviewed face-to-face by Hopkins, although it has

been over a year and a half since initial contact with Hopkins

and over three years since the abduction.

Richard and Dan allegedly met with Linda and have written letters

to Hopkins. Linda has a picture of Dan. Yet Dan and Richard

refuse to speak directly with Hopkins. No hard evidence confirms

that Richard and Dan even exist.

Though they initially expressed extreme concern over the well

being of Linda, the alleged "Dan" and "Richard" waited more than

a year before contacting Linda and Hopkins. Why ? Furthermore,

they contacted Hopkins before they visited Linda. How did this

come about ? After all, they knew the location of Linda's

apartment, so it would seem that they would have had no reason to

contact Hopkins. Why did they bother with him at all ?

The woman on the bridge said that before contacting Hopkins she

only discussed the matter with her son, daughter, sister and

brother-in-law. Why didn't she contact other UFO investigators ?

Why only Hopkins ? If there is some unclear reporting on this

point and she did actually contact others, can such be verified ?

Has there been any investigation of this woman such as checking

with her neighbours, friends, family, or previous employers? What

is her background ? Has she had any previous relationship with

Linda ? These questions have not been addressed, and thus the

credibility of the only directly interviewed, corroborating,

first-hand witness remains in doubt.

Dan has spent time in a mental institution. Richard suffered

extreme emotional distress, forcing him to take a leave of

absence from his job. Assuming that these two people actually

exist, one must now be careful in accepting their claims (even if

offered in good faith). Despite their debilitating mental

problems, at least one of them was allowed to drive a car with UN

license plates. Are we really to believe that they returned to

active duty in a sensitive position (presumably carrying

firearms) and were given use of an official car ?

Who was the doctor who took the X-rays ? We are only told that

this person is closely connected with Linda. Why isn't a formal

report available ? Given the alarming nature of the outcome, why

wasn't there an immediate examination ? Linda said that the

doctor was "nervous" and didn't want to talk about the X- ray.

It is not clear whether Hopkins has ever met this alleged doctor.

Instead, Hopkins showed the X-ray to a friend of his. Some have

speculated that Linda may have simply put some small object in

her nose and had a friendly X-ray technician assist. We have

seen no evidence to exclude this possibility.

Linda claims that she was kidnapped twice, nearly drowned, and

further harassed. Yet she refuses to contact the police, even

after Hopkins' urging. During the February 1, 1992 meeting with

Stefula and Butler, Linda asked if she had legal grounds to

"shoot" Dan if he attempted another abduction of her by force.

Stefula advised against it and recommended that she go to the

police and make an official complaint. She declined. If she was

afraid, why didn't her husband contact authorities ? The most

plausible reason is that if a report was filed, and her story

proved false, she could be subject to criminal charges. Linda's

failure here raises enormous questions of credibility.


Despite the numerous problems outlined above, we believed it

worthwhile to gain additional information because so many people

had contacted us with questions. On September 19, 1992, Stefula,

Butler, and Hansen travelled to New York City in order to visit

the site of the alleged abduction. We found that Linda's

apartment complex has a large courtyard with guard house manned

24 hours a day. We talked with the security guard and his

supervisor and asked if they had ever heard about a UFO encounter

near the complex. They reported hearing nothing about one. We

also asked if the police routinely enter the complex and

undertake door-to-door canvassing in order to find witnesses to

crimes. They said that this was a very rare practice. We

obtained the name and phone number of the apartment manager and

called him a few days later. He reported knowing nothing about

the UFO sighting, nor had he heard anything about it from any of

the approximately 1600

residents in the complex.

We also visited the site under the FDR drive where Richard and

Dan purportedly parked their car. This was in a direct line of

sight and nearly across the street from the loading dock of the

New York Post. We spoke with an employee of the Post, who told

us that the dock was in use through most of the night. A few

days later, we called the New York Post and spoke to the person

who was the loading dock manager in 1989. He told us that the

dock is in use until 5:00 a.m. and that there are many trucks

that come and go frequently during the early morning hours. The

manager knew nothing of the UFO which supposedly appeared only a

couple blocks away.

Also in September, a colleague of ours contacted the Downtown

Heliport, on Pier Six on the East River of Manhattan. That is

the only heliport on the east side of Manhattan between Linda's

apartment and the lower tip of the island. Our colleague was

informed that the normal hours of operation of the heliport are

from 7:00 a.m to 7:00 p.m. The Senior Airport Operations Agent

researched the records and found that there were no helicopter

movements on November 30, 1989 before normal hours. Our

colleague was also told that about six months previously, the

heliport authorities had been approached by a man in his fifties

with white hair who had made a similar inquiry. That man had

asked about a UFO that had crashed into the East River.

The Meeting of October 3

On October 3, 1992, we met with Hopkins and his colleagues at his

residence in Manhattan. Among those in attendance were David

Jacobs, Walter H. Andrus, and Jerome Clark. During our meeting a

number of questions were raised, and some of Hopkins' answers

revealed a great deal about his investigations as well as the

attitudes of Jacobs, Andrus, and Clark. Linda's statements also

told us much.

We inquired if Hopkins had asked the guards of the apartment

complex whether they had seen the UFO. He indicated that he had

not done so. This is quite surprising, considering that the UFO

was so bright that the woman on the bridge had to shield her eyes

from it even though she was more than a quarter mile distant.

One would have thought that Hopkins would have made inquiries of

the guards considering the spectacular nature of the event.

We noted that Linda had claimed that police canvassing of her

apartment complex was a common occurrence. We asked Hopkins if

he had attempted to verify this with the guards or the building

manager. He indicated that he did not feel it necessary.

Although this is a minor point, it is one of the few directly

checkable statements made by Linda, but Hopkins did not attempt

to confirm it.

We asked about the weather on the night of the abduction.

Amazingly, Hopkins told us that he didn't know the weather

conditions for that period. This was perhaps one of the most

revealing moments, and it gives great insight into Hopkins'

capabilities as an investigator. If the weather had been foggy,

rainy, or snowing, the visibility could have been greatly

hampered, and the reliability of the testimony of the witnesses

would need to be evaluated accordingly. Even the very first form

in the MUFON Field Investigator's Manual requests information on

weather conditions (Fowler, 1983, p. 30). We ourselves did check

the weather and knew the conditions did not impede visibility.

But the fact that Hopkins apparently had not bothered to obtain

even this most basic investigatory information was illuminating.

He claims to have much supporting evidence that he has not

revealed to outsiders; however, because of Hopkins' demonstrated

failure to check even the most rudimentary facts, we place

absolutely no credence in his undisclosed "evidence."

During the discussions, Hopkins' partisans made allusions to

other world figures involved in this event, though they did not

give names. Hopkins' supporters, who had been given information

denied to us, seemed to believe that there was a large motorcade

that carried Perez de Cuellar and these other dignitaries in the

early morning hours of November 30, 1989. At the meeting, we

presented an outside expert consultant who for many years had

served in dignitary protective services. He described the


preplanning required for moving officials and the massive

coordination during the movements. Many people and networks

would be alerted if there were any problems at all (such as a car

stalling, or a delay in passing checkpoints). His detailed

presentation seemed to take Hopkins aback. The consultant listed

several specialized terms used by the dignitary protective

services and suggested that Hopkins ask Richard and Dan the

meaning of those terms as a test of their knowledge, and thus

credibility. As far as we know, Hopkins has failed to contact

Richard and Dan about that matter.

During the beginning part of the October 3 meeting, Linda's

husband answered a few questions (in a very quiet voice). He

seemed to have difficulty with some of them, and Linda spoke up

to "correct" his memory. He left the meeting very early, even

though Linda was under considerable stress, and despite the fact

that she was overheard asking him to stay by her side. His

leaving raised many questions in our minds.

Linda also responded to questions during the meeting. Early in

the discussion, Hansen asked Linda's husband whether he was born

and raised in the U.S. He replied that he had come to this

country when he was 17. Linda promptly interjected that she knew

why Hansen had asked that question. During a prior telephone

conversation between Linda and Hansen, Linda had asserted that

her husband was born and raised in New York. She acknowledged

that she had previously deliberately misled Hansen.

Later in the meeting the question arose about a financial

agreement between Linda and Hopkins. Stefula noted that Linda

had told him that she and Hopkins had an agreement to split

profits from a book. Hopkins denied that there was any such

arrangement, and Linda then claimed that she had deliberately

planted disinformation.

During the meeting, reports were heard from two psychologists.

They concluded that Linda's intelligence was in the "average"

range. One suggested that Linda would need the mind of a Bobby

Fischer to plan and execute any hoax that could explain this case

and that she was not capable of orchestrating such a massive,

complex operation. Although these were supposedly professional

opinions, we were not given the names of these psychologists.

Ms. Penelope Franklin also attended the meeting. She is a close

colleague of Hopkins and the editor of IF--The Bulletin of the

Intruders Foundation. Hopkins had previously informed us in

writing that Ms. Franklin was a coinvestigator on the Napolitano

case. In a conversation during a break in the meeting, Franklin

asserted to Hansen that Linda was absolutely justified in lying

about the case. This remarkable statement was also witnessed by

Vincent Creevy, who happened to be standing between Franklin and


Franklin's statement raises very troubling questions, especially

given her prominence within Hopkins' circle of colleagues. Her

statement appears to violate all norms of scientific integrity.

We can only wonder whether Linda has been counselled to lie by

Hopkins or his colleagues. Have other abductees been given

similar advice? What kind of a social and ethical environment

are Hopkins and Franklin creating for abductees? We also cannot

help but wonder whether Hopkins and Franklin believe it

appropriate for themselves to lie about the case. They owe the

UFO research community an explanation for Franklin's statement.

If such is not forthcoming, we simply cannot accept them as

credible investigators.


In concluding his Mufon UFO Journal paper, Hopkins wrote: "if

rumours are true and there are officially sanctioned intelligence

agents within the various UFO investigative networks, these

people will also be mobilized to subvert the case from the

inside, even before its full dimensions are made known to the

public at large" (Hopkins, 1992c, p. 16). Hopkins apparently

takes this idea quite seriously. After he learned of our

investigation, he warned Butler that he suspected Butler and

Stefula of being government agents and that he planned to inform

others of his suspicions. A few weeks after our October 3

meeting, he told people that he suspected Hansen of being a CIA

agent. This was not an off-hand remark made to a friend in an

informal setting; rather this was asserted to a woman whom he did

not know and who had happened to attend one of his lectures

(member of MUFON in New Jersey who feared future repercussions if

her name was mentioned, personal communication, November 7,



This case is quite exotic, even for a UFO abduction. Government

agents are involved, the UN Secretary General is a key witness,

Linda was kidnapped in the interests of national security,

concerns are expressed about world peace, the CIA is attempting

to discredit the case, and the ETs helped end the Cold War. The

story is truly marvellous, and one might wonder about its origin.

We wish to draw the readers' attention to the science fiction

novel, Nighteyes, by Garfield Reeves-Stevens. This work was

first published in April 1989, a few months before Linda claimed

to have been abducted from her apartment.

The experiences reported by Linda seem to be a composite of those

of two characters in Nighteyes: Sarah and Wendy. The parallels

are striking; some are listed in Table 1. We have not bothered

to include the similarities commonly reported in abduction

experiences (e.g., implants, bodily examinations, probes, etc.).

The parallels are sufficiently numerous to lead us to suspect

that the novel served as the basis for Linda's story. We want to

emphasize that the parallels are with discrete elements of the

case and not with the story line itself.

Table 1 - Similarities Between the Linda Napolitano Case and the

Science Fiction Novel Nighteyes

* Linda was abducted into a UFO hovering over her high-rise

apartment building in New York City.

Sarah was abducted into a UFO hovering over her high-rise

apartment building in New York City.

* Dan and Richard initially claimed to have been on a stakeout

and were involved in a UFO abduction during early morning hours.

Early in Nighteyes two government agents were on a stakeout

and became involved in a UFO abduction during early morning


* Linda was kidnapped and thrown into a car by Richard and Dan.

Wendy was kidnapped and thrown into a van by Derek and Merril.

* Linda claimed to have been under surveillance by someone in a


Vans were used for surveillance in Nighteyes.

* Dan is a security and intelligence agent.

Derek was an FBI agent.

* Dan was hospitalized for emotional trauma.

One of the government agents in Nighteyes was hospitalized

for emotional trauma.

* During the kidnapping Dan took Linda to a safe house.

During the kidnapping Derek took Wendy to a safe house.

* The safe house Linda visited was on the beach.

In Nighteyes, one safe house was on the beach.

* Before her kidnapping, Linda contacted Budd Hopkins about her


Before her kidnapping, Wendy contacted Charles Edward Starr

about her abduction.

* Budd Hopkins is a prominent UFO abduction researcher living in

New York City and an author who has written books on the topic.

Charles Edward Starr was a prominent UFO abduction researcher

living in New York City and an author who had written books on

the topic.

* Linda and Dan were abducted at the same time and communicated

with each other during their abductions.

Wendy and Derek were abducted at the same time and

communicated with each other during their abductions.

* Linda thought she "knew" Richard previously.

Wendy "knew" Derek previously.

* Dan expressed a romantic interest in Linda.

Derek became romantically involved with Wendy.

* Dan and Richard felt considerable vibration during the close


During the UFO landing in Nighteyes there was much vibration.

* Photographs of Linda were taken on the beach and sent to


In Nighteyes, photographs taken on a beach played a central

role [as they do in the "Washburn" case described on pages 10-11,




One of the most curious features of our investigation has been

the reaction of several prominent leaders in ufology. Indeed, in

the long run, this may turn out to be the most important part of

the entire affair.

After the MUFON symposium in July, Stefula had several

conversations with Walter Andrus, International Director of

MUFON. Andrus told him that MUFON had no interest in publishing

any material critical of this case even though they had published

an article describing it as "The Abduction Case of the Century."

This is a most surprising statement from a leader of an

organization which purports to be scientific. Andrus' statements

should raise questions about the legitimacy of MUFON's claims to

use objective, scientific methods.

On September 14, 1992, Hopkins faxed Butler a letter saying that

as a long-standing member of MUFON, he was issuing an "order"

(his word). He "ordered" Stefula and Butler to stop their

investigation of the case. We found this very curious, and we

wondered how Hopkins, as a member of MUFON, could believe that it

was in his power to issue such an "order." His letter seemed to

reflect the mindset of a leader of a cult rather than that of an

investigator searching for the truth.

For the meeting on October 3 in New York City, Hopkins flew in

his close friend Jerome Clark from Minnesota. Under the sway of

Hopkins, Clark strenuously urged that outsiders cease

investigations, thus seemingly trying to reinforce Hopkins'

earlier "order" (despite the fact that the case already had been

reported in the Wall Street Journal, Omni, Paris Match and the

television show Inside Edition). Clark (1992a) later committed

his position to writing, saying that this case may indeed involve

a world political figure and have international consequences.

Andrus and Clark are arguably the two most influential figures in

U.S. ufology. Andrus is International Director of the Mutual UFO

Network (MUFON), and he organizes the largest annual conference

on UFOs in the country and regularly writes for MUFON's monthly

magazine. Clark is a columnist for Fate magazine, editor of

International UFO Reporter, vice-president of the J. Allen Hynek

Center for UFO Studies, and author of books and even an

encyclopedia on UFOs. Because of their eminence, their

statements should be of special concern to the UFO research


At the meeting on October 3, the kidnapping and attempted murder

of Linda were discussed. We informed Hopkins and the other

participants that we were prepared to make a formal request for a

federal investigation of the government agents responsible for

the alleged felonies. Hopkins, Andrus, and Clark appeared to

literally panic at the suggestion. They vigorously argued

against making such a request. We could only conclude that they

wanted to suppress evidence of attempted murder. We wondered


This situation seemed so outrageous that a few days later Hansen

called Andrus, Clark, John Mack, and David Jacobs and asked them

if they really believed Linda's story about the kidnappings and

attempted murder. All of these individuals said that they

accepted her account. We were forced to seriously consider their

opinions because they had been given secret information not

revealed to us. During the telephone conversations, Andrus and

Clark again strongly objected to requesting an investigation by

law enforcement



The Napolitano case brings into stark relief symptoms of deep

problems within ufology: major figures in the UFO community

aggressively sought to suppress evidence of a purported attempted

murder; Hopkins failed to obtain and verify even the most basic

investigatory information; his co-investigator, Penelope

Franklin, approved of lying by the principal witness; and leaders

in the field have willingly accepted and promoted the case

despite its exotic features and lack of supporting evidence.

This state of affairs raises perplexing questions and cries out

for a plausible explanation. The thinking and motivations of

ufology's leaders deserve at least as much attention as the

abduction claims


Did these leaders really believe, as they said, that they

accepted the report of attempted murder? If so, they seem not to

have acted as responsible citizens. However, these people do not

appear to us to be delusional, in any usual sense of that word.

They are highly functional members of society. They also do not

appear to be perpetrators of a hoax or even "yellow journalists"

with a "wink-wink, nudge-nudge" attitude who knowingly want to

capitalize on it for their own temporary glory or financial gain.

We believe that other motivating factors and concepts provide a

better explanation and framework for understanding these

seemingly bizarre actions. We would suggest that perhaps, at some

semiconscious level, these individuals do not really believe

their UFO investigations to be fully engaged with the "real

world." Rather, their behaviour and statements seem more

consistent with something like fantasy role playing, perhaps akin

to the game Dungeons and Dragons (D & D).

Both ufology and D & D allow direct, immediate involvement with

powerful "other-world" beings and mythological motifs. Both

endeavours have been known to overtake (possess?) the

participants, though only occasionally to their detriment. Most

"players" are able to successfully detach themselves from

involvement, but occasionally the "game" becomes obsessive and

interferes with "real-world" pursuits. This "role playing" taps

archetypal images that hold great psychological power. The

archetypes can become immensely attractive, even addictive, to

those playing the game. The notions and images of powerful

"other-world" figures are part of the human condition. Accounts

of them are found in all cultures throughout history, this being

one of the traditional domains of religion. Even atheists and

those who deny the existence of such beings must still grapple

with the ideas on some level, though this might not be

consciously recognized by an individual.

In the Napolitano case, the "other-world" figures include not

only the ET aliens, but also the pantheon of agents of an

unreachable, evil government conspiracy determined to prevent

humankind's knowledge of the ETs. Intermediaries between flesh

and blood humans and the powerful masters of the mystical higher

orders are

ubiquitous in the realm of religion. Angels and devils serve the

centers of ultimate good and evil. So here we see the largely

invisible minions "Dan" and "Richard" and the mysterious witness

on the bridge furthering the cause of "Truth." Likewise, Hopkins

discerns the skeptical investigators as agents of a secular


Thus the interactions of Hopkins, et al., with these players are

seen to conform to the rules that historically control the

interactions between humans and gods. Humans question and

provoke the gods only at the greatest peril. The proper approach

is to appease, mollify and supplicate these "entities." It

should be no surprise that the simplest reality tests of the

Napolitano story were not made in this case. Hopkins' failure to

check the weather conditions during the abduction actually makes

sense in the context of this cult-like thought process. Just as

lice were called "pearls of heaven" by medieval religious

devotees, the physical event-reality issues in the Linda story

are transmuted by her supporters.

The roles of high priest and acolytes are only too obvious when

examining the behaviours of personages Hopkins, Clark, Jacobs,

and Andrus. These aging white males patronizingly refer to

Linda's "average" intellect, perhaps to reassure themselves that

they are indeed in control. Yet the high priestess has, in

effect, achieved the godhead (metaphorically speaking, of


There are some differences between D & D and ufological pursuits.

D & D has more restrictive and structured rules. The boundaries

of appropriate behaviour are rather clearly defined. Ufology is

more "unstructured," there are fewer "rules" about what is and is

not possible, and the powers of the "other- world" figures are

almost unbounded. This relative lack of structure makes the UFO

game somewhat more "dangerous." In order to grapple with the

phenomena, the paradigms adopted by many ufologists have

"concretized" (i.e., structured) the beings as ET humanoids.

In fantasy role playing, the rules are not questioned; they are

accepted by the players at the beginning. Similarly in the Linda

case, the basic evidence is not to be questioned. Andrus, Clark,

and Hopkins have all urged that outsiders cease investigation

(despite the massive publicity given to the case). Such

challenging of "rules" leads to disruptions of the "game," and

the dungeon masters need to keep order.

Direct interfacing of the "fantasy role" with the "real-world"

(i.e., direct allegations of attempted murder, verification of

details of testimony), usually does not cause problems, except

when the players do not act in accordance with consequential

"real-world" concerns. Hopkins, Andrus, Clark, Mack, and Jacobs

seem to have accepted a system of beliefs and assumptions that

have led to a collision with the "real world." They have been

unable to rationally defend their behaviour, and Jerome Clark's

(1992a) "Torquemada" article is perhaps the single best example

of that. In fact, his emotional attack labelling Hansen as

"Torquemada" (director of the Spanish Inquisition) resurrects and

reinforces religious themes, and it perhaps betrays his

unconscious feelings of religious persecution.

The above discussion derives from a psycho-social perspective,

and we would like to encourage U.S. researchers to become more

familiar the ideas generated from that approach. We admit that

the psycho-social theorists have failed to address many aspects

of the abduction experience generally. Exclusive use of that

perspective can lead to positing simplistic and scientifically


explanations. On the other hand, those that shun the psycho-

social perspective typically fail to recognize the explanatory

power it possesses and its ability to illuminate risks faced by

investigators. Those wanting more information about the psycho-

social perspective may wish to read the book Angels and Aliens by

Keith Thompson (1991) and the British magazine Magonia; almost

without saying, the works of John Keel are also recommended.

We are not denigrating ufology by such comparisons as those made

above, nor are we attacking the existence of "other-world"

entities. Regardless whether entities or ET aliens exist, the

comparisons are useful and the consequences and insights are

applicable. Such a comparative analysis should not be limited to

only D & D players and ufologists; similar comparisons could be

made for virtually everyone in the "real world." They can help

serve as warnings about becoming too complacent regarding beliefs

in our own "rationality." DISCUSSION

The Napolitano case appears beset by an overwhelming number of

problems. It was with some misgivings that we first embarked on

this investigation because we did not wish to see UFO abduction

research discredited. In fact, one of us, Butler, has had

abduction experiences himself. It was our judgement that if we

did not raise these issues for public discussion, there was a

much greater risk for the field. The case was garnering

considerable attention, and if it became widely regarded as

evidential, it would reflect very badly on the field as a whole

if it was eventually shown to be false.

We were quite unprepared for the reaction to our work from

leaders of the field. Walter Andrus and Jerome Clark

aggressively tried to dissuade us from continuing our

investigation, and so far they have failed to publish any

material critical of the case. We were unaware that such

belligerently antiscientific attitudes were so prevalent at the

highest levels of ufology. When these same individuals attempted

to suppress evidence of an alleged attempted murder, we concluded

that their beliefs and actions were

incompatible with "real world" events. However, we do not

consider the label "deluded" appropriate here, and we remind the

reader that these individuals are backed by people such as

Harvard psychiatrist John Mack and David Jacobs, professor of

history at Temple


Despite our disappointment, we strongly support scientific

research into the abduction phenomena and would like to call

attention to high quality studies in the field (e.g., Ring &

Rosing, 1990; Rodeghier, Goodpaster & Blatterbauer, 1992). We

also believe that the core abduction experience has not been

adequately explained within normal scientific frameworks. We

commend the work of Hufford (1982) in exploring similar issues.

The present case has significant implications for assessing the

true nature of the abduction phenomena. The idea that actual

extraterrestrial physical creatures are abducting people has been

vigorously promoted in the scientific literature and in the

media. Jacobs has promoted that view in the New York Times

(Hinds, 1992) as well as in the Journal of UFO Studies (Jacobs,

1992). He suggests that the ET aliens are visiting earth in order

to obtain human sperm and eggs. In his JUFOS article, Jacobs was

bitterly critical of Ring and Rosing, saying that they ignored

"cases of witnesses seeing others being abducted while not being

abducted themselves" (p. 162). Surprisingly, Jacobs gave no

citations for any of these cases. Hansen wrote to Jacobs

requesting such citations but received no reply. Jacobs' article

was lavish in its praise for Hopkins' work, and we suspect that

Jacobs had in mind the Napolitano case when he wrote his article.

We would like to remind the reader that it was Hopkins (1992a)

who wrote: "The importance of this case is virtually

immeasurable, as it powerfully supports both the objective

reality of UFO abductions and the accuracy of regressive

hypnosis." Because the argument for the "objective reality of

UFO abductions" relies heavily on Hopkins' work, our findings

call into question this entire theoretical perspective.

In our judgment, conscious hoaxes are rare in the abduction

field. The vast majority of those claiming to be abducted have

had some kind of intense personal experience, whatever the

ultimate cause. Nevertheless, the problems of fraud and hoaxing

have long been a problem in ufology, especially for cases with

high visibility. This will continue. Researchers must become

more open minded to the potential for hoaxing, yet not be blinded

to the genuine phenomena. This is a difficult balance.

Some have questioned possible motives in this case; it is

impossible to obtain certain knowledge here. Perhaps Linda

really had some kind of an abduction experience (Butler believes

this is likely to be the case). As she became acquainted with

Hopkins and other abductees, she may have wanted to vindicate

them--to save them from ridicule and derision. Perhaps money was

the only motivation. Possibly there was a combination of

factors. It does appear that if this was a hoax, it was not

perpetrated by a lone individual. Collaborators would include the

woman on the bridge, an X-ray operator, and a man (or men)

preparing the tape recordings. However, we want to emphasize

that we have no direct evidence to implicate Hopkins in attempted


Cynics might criticize Hopkins saying that he ignored the obvious

problems because he was motivated by money that might accrue from

books and movie rights. While this might possibly be an

unconscious factor, critics rarely acknowledge that Hopkins does

not charge abductees for his services (unlike some

"professionals"). Hopkins has spent an enormous amount of his

own time and money investigating the phenomena. Furthermore, he

does not have an academic position subsidized by the tax payers.

One should not begrudge him the profits from his books. Hopkins

has been involved in considerable controversy, and some have

disputed his methods. Nevertheless, he has done much to bring

the abduction problem to the attention of scientists and the

mental health community, and his efforts have made it much more

acceptable to discuss such strange encounters. Abduction

experiences are often emotional and traumatic, and the abductees

need considerable support. Hopkins has attempted to provide much

needed aid.

The outside critic who is not directly involved in such

activities almost never recognizes how difficult it is to serve

as both a therapist and as a scientist. Those persons trying to

help abductees emotionally need to provide warmth, acceptance,

and trust. The scientist, however, needs to be critically open

minded and somewhat detached and analytical. The two functions

are not altogether compatible. We cannot realistically expect


individual to be 100% effective in both roles. By the nature of

the endeavour, those trying to be helpful can be vulnerable to



A Note on the Hansen-Clark Communications

One of the more entertaining aspects of this case has been the

resulting missives by Hansen (1992a, 1992b) and Clark (1992a,

1992b) which have been widely circulated and posted on electronic

bulletin boards. We encourage those interested to obtain copies.

Clark's (1992b) most recent piece deserves comment. He now says

that he now does not accept Linda's claims about the kidnapping

and attempted murder by government agents. However, in a

telephone conversation with him on October 6, 1992, he told

Hansen that he accepted those claims. Hansen did not tape-record


conversation, but he is willing to provide a sworn statement to

that effect. Hansen also talked with Marcello Truzzi who had

spoken to Clark near the same time. Truzzi understood that Clark

believed that Linda was sincere in her claims and was telling the

truth to the best of her ability.

The salient points are summarized as follows:

1. At the 1992 MUFON symposium, Linda Napolitano spoke in front

of hundreds of people and claimed that she was kidnapped by

government agents.

2. Clark told both Hansen and Truzzi that he accepted Linda's

story (i.e., that she was telling the truth to the best of her


3. Hopkins claims to have much evidence that could be used to

identify the culprits.

4. Hopkins flew Clark to New York, whereupon Clark aggressively

injected himself into matters and vigorously opposed continuing

an outside investigation and reporting the alleged felonies to

law enforcement authorities. He defended this position, in

writing, saying: "if this story is true, it is not just a UFO

case but a `politically sensitive' event because it supposedly

involves a political figure of international stature...banging on

the wrong doors could alert the relevant agency that two of its

agents were leaking a huge secret." (Clark, 1992a, p. 1).

We will let the readers decide whether Clark's initial position

was compatible with "real-world" considerations.

We are gratified that Clark has taken the time to comment, at

length, on these issues, and in a style so typical of his level

of dispassionate commentary. We caution readers that Clark

perhaps may be currently acutely embarrassed by his statement

quoted in point 4 and may feel the need to obscure this central

issue. Nevertheless, we are pleased that he now seems to have

made a cathartic conversion.


Baskin, Anita. (1992). Antimatter: High-rise abductions: Alien

abductions routinely occur in big cities and high-rise buildings

around the world. Omni. April. Vol. 14, No. 7, p. 75.

Clark, Jerome. (1992a). The Politics of Torquemada; or, Earth

Calling Hansen's Planet. 612 North Oscar Avenue, Canby,

Minnesota 56220. October 24, 1992. [This paper has been

circulated and posted on electronic bulletin boards].

Clark, Jerome. (1992b). Wasting Away in Torquemadaville.

November 30, 1992. [This paper has been circulated].

De Brosses, Marie-Therese. (1992). Enleves par les E.T.! Paris

Match. 17 Sept., pp. 13, 14, 18, 96, 98.

Drano the Sewerian [pseudonym]. (1992). SETI and military

personnel monitor secret UFO abduction conference at MIT. Third

Eyes Only. July-August, No. 4, pp. 42-44.

Fowler, Raymond E. (Editor). (1983). MUFON Field Investigator's

Manual. Seguin, TX: Mutual UFO Network.

Hansen, George P. (1992a). Attempted Murder vs. The Politics of

Ufology: A Question of Priorities in the Linda Napolitano Case.

20 October 1992. [This paper has been circulated and posted on a

number of electronic bulletin boards and published in several

periodicals including The New Jersey Chronicle, Vol. 3, Nos. 1/2,

September-December, 1992; MUFON of Ohio Newsletter, No. 3, Second

November 1992 Issue; Third Eyes Only, No. 6, November 1992; UFO

Spotters Newsletter, No. 16, 1992; Minnesota MUFON Newsletter,

No. 37, October 1992]

Hansen, George P. (1992b). "Torquemada" Responds to Jerome

Clark. 23 November 1992. [This paper has been circulated and

posted on a number of electronic bulletin boards.]

Hatfield, Scott. (1992). X-Ray Said to Show Alien Implant.

ADVANCE for Radiologic Science Professionals. October 26, p. 11.

Hinds, Michael deCourcy. (1992). Taking U.F.O.'s for Credit,

and for Real. New York Times, 28 October, p. B9.

Hopkins, Budd. (1981). Missing Time: A Documented Study of UFO

Abductions. New York: Richard Marek.

Hopkins, Budd. (1987). Intruders: The Incredible Visitations at

Copley Woods. New York: Random House.

Hopkins, Budd. (1991). Innocent bystanders. IF-The Bulletin of

the Intruders Foundation. Vol. 1, No. 3, pp. 1-4.

Hopkins, [Budd]. (1992a). A doubly witnessed abduction.

Abstracts: Abduction Study Conference at Massachusetts Institute

of Technology prepared by Andrea Pritchard. June 13-17, p. III-


Hopkins, Budd. (1992b). An Open Letter From Budd Hopkins.

Mufon UFO Journal, June, p. 20.

Hopkins, Budd. (1992c). The Linda Cortile [Napolitano]

Abduction Case. Mufon UFO Journal, September, pp. 12-16.

Hopkins, Budd. (1992d). The Linda Cortile [Napolitano]

Abduction Case: Part II "The Woman on the Bridge (sic). Mufon

UFO Journal, December, pp. 5-9.

Hufford, David J. (1982). The Terror That Comes in the Night:

An Experience- Centered Study of Supernatural Assault Traditions.

Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press.

Jacobs, David M. (1992). On Studying the Abduction Phenomenon

Without Knowing What It Is. Journal of UFO Studies, New Series

Vol. 3, 153-163.

Jefferson, David J. (1992). A Harvard doctor offers trauma

relief for UFO `abductees.' Wall Street Journal, May 14, pp. A1,


Mack, John E. (1992a). Helping Abductees. International UFO

Reporter. July/ August, pp. 10-15, 20.

Mack, John E. (1992b). Other Realities: The "Alien Abduction"

Phenomenon. Noetic Sciences Review. Autumn, pp. 5-11.

McKenna, Chris. (1992). Doc `Abducted by Aliens' Ruled Fit to

Work. New York Post, November 21, pp. 5, 13.

Reeves-Stevens, Garfield. (1989). Nighteyes. New York:


Ring, Kenneth; & Rosing, Christopher J. (1990). The Omega

Project: A Psychological Survey of Persons Reporting Abductions

and Other UFO Encounters. Journal of UFO Studies, New Series Vol.

2, 59-98.

Rodeghier, Mark; Goodpaster, Jeff; & Blatterbauer, Sandra.

(1992). Psychosocial Characteristics of Abductees: Results From

the CUFOS Abduction Project. Journal of UFO Studies, New Series

Vol. 3, 59-90.

Sontag, Deborah. (1992). Reverence and Rigidity in the New Age:

At the Whole Life Expo the Spirits are Willing So Long as the

Wallet is Not Weak. New York Times, October 5, pp. B1, B2.

Stacy, Dennis. (1992). The 1992 MUFON Symposium. Mufon UFO

Journal, August, pp. 3-10.

Thompson, Keith. (1991). Angels and Aliens: UFOs and the Mythic

Imagination. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley Publishing Company.

Unusual Personal Experiences: An Analysis of the Data from Three

National Surveys Conducted by the Roper Organization. (1992).

Las Vegas, NV: Bigelow Holding Corporation.



Acknowledgements: We would like to thank Philip J. Klass for

assistance. We would also like to thank Vincent Creevy for

providing materials and bringing the novel Nighteyes to our

attention. Thanks are also due to several who provided help but

do not want their names associated with the field of ufology.

Joseph Stefula is a former Special Agent for the U.S. Army

Criminal Investigations Command and is a former MUFON State

Director for New Jersey. He resigned his directorship shortly

after finishing this investigation.

Richard Butler is a former law enforcement and security police

specialist for the U.S. Air Force and now a UFO investigator

researching abductions and government cover-ups.

George Hansen has conducted parapsychological research and is

author of the article "CSICOP and the Skeptics: An Overview"

which appeared in the January 1992 Journal of the American

Society for Psychical Research.

Crop Circles in Sweden

Tickle the Imagination

by Clas Svahn, UFO Sweden

At Harplinge north of Halmstad a woman sat down in the middle of

a rye field to meditate. At Skyllberg south of Hallsberg curious

people walked about in something that looked like a map of the

sunken Atlantic. At Bracke near Hoganas a dowser decided that it

was all due to the position of the planets.

"I never thought that people could act in this way", says an 18-

year-old from Borlange, who together with two school friends

created a huge pictogram near Orsa.

When the circle phenomenon came to Sweden this summer it did so

with a bang. But maybe it was no surprise after all that Sweden

would be "hit" by the circles. In several lectures and TV

programmes the general public was informed of the phenomenon. A

major programme on the circles was shown on the commercial

Channel 4 in March. Then "Night Cafe" on National television

(TV2) invited people to discuss the circles on July 29th.

Following this there are few Swedes who are unaware of the


Whereas almost a dozen crop circle cases were reported in Sweden

not a single case was reported by UFO groups in Norway and

Denmark. However one case was reported from Finland. At the

beginning of August a circle was found at Luumaki. A fake

pictogram was made here last year. This year's Finnish formation

consisted of three circles, each six metres in diameter, forming

a triangle. Two of them were connected by paths, half a metre


In England the number of circles is down to about forty this

year. This compares with 600-800 at their peak. The Grand Old Man

of British cereology - Pat Delgado - has become tired of the

phenomenon, as have many others. Delgado has made a lot of money

from the phenomenon with his three books, "Circular Evidence",

"Crop Circles, The Latest Evidence" and "Crop Circles, Conclusive

Evidence?" - the first two written with Colin Andrews.

"Two Dozen Genuine Circles"

Now Delgado has retired from cereology, Colin Andrews has

emigrated to the USA to write about cattle mutilations and other

mysteries. I gather that in a telephone conversation with Terence

Meaden earlier this summer Pat Delgado accepted Doug Bower and

Dave Chorleys' claims and that he now considers most circles to

be fakes.

The interest of the British media has also dropped to almost

nothing. "As far as I know only some 40 circles have been

reported this summer", reports the Editor of "The Crop Watcher"

Paul Fuller, to UFO Aktuellt. He believes that every one of them

must be fakes - and that includes the circles appearing in Sweden

too !

UFO Aktuellt is the first Swedish source to talk to an 18-year-

old high school student who admits that on the night of September

4th he and two friends created the big pictogram outside Orsa. He

prefers to remain anonymous, but his name is known to UFO-Sweden.

Just in case he and his friends from St Mikael School in Mora

have apologised to the farmer, Erik Sundin.

"When we heard people who had seen our circle talking about how

it could not have been made by human beings - well, we didn't

know what to think," he told me on the phone.

The Story of a Hoaxer

It was about 11 pm on Saturday September 4th that the three 18-

year-olds went into a rye field at Knarrholen near Orsa.

Equipped with some torches, a short plank, an iron lever and a

compass they parked the car and entered a field belonging to Erik

Sundin. It was wet and damp, which later turned out to be to

their advantage.

"I would say it took us one and a half hours before we were

satisfied. It was rather tough on our backs as we didn't think of

attaching the plank to any strings so we had to crawl about. The

place was rather secluded, but if we saw a passing car we turned

our torches off".

"Later, when we saw the articles in the papers and heard people

speculating about everything from earth radiation to aliens it

felt kind of strange. I am interested in UFOs myself and have

seen a few programmes about crop circles on the satellite

channels. I guess that we got our inspiration from them."

The 18-year-old hoaxer says that what is most surprising is how

naively everyone acted. Some people visited the circle with

dowsing rods and reported feeling earth energies. Others stood

inside the circle and told how an unknown energy surged through

their bodies.

"I've learned a lot about psychology these last weeks," he said.

A few days later Bertil Kuhleman had been interviewed by Barbro

Hellberg from Radio Dalarna. He explained that it was his firm

belief that the pictograms at Orsa represented messages from

space. Kuhleman, who worked for many year with the contactee


Lindgren, believes that the circles are absolute proof that

aliens are here on Earth.

Richard Andrews Visits Sweden

There has certainly been no inspiration for circle conmen this

year. In late Spring one of the remaining enthusiasts held a

series of public lectures in Sweden. With his angled branches

ready at hand Richard Andrews described the formations of 1992

and presented his own thoughts on the subject to fascinated

audiences in

Stockholm and Gothenburg. Andrews and his colleagues believe that

the circles have a direct connection to field lines of earth

energy and prehistoric sites.

I met Richard Andrews during my visit to England in 1991, when

the circles were at their peak. Besides giving us a lesson in

dowsing he told us that the phenomenon would develop into

"bigger, more complicated formations". In fact it turned out to

be quite the opposite. (According to recent quotes in a Swedish

newspaper he has now changed his mind, "There will be fewer

circles in England and more in Sweden").

As far as Sweden is concerned it all started very quietly around

July 6th when two brothers in Sala discovered a couple of circles

beneath a high-voltage transmission line. One of the brothers

told UFO Sweden that he saw a light shifting in the sky and felt

static electricity in the air early in the morning as he was out

walking his dog. Later the other brother went to the place out of

curiosity and discovered two circles in a rye field. After a


discussion the younger brother decided to call UFO Sweden


A thorough investigation showed that the two circles (6 and 12

metres in diameter) had no traces of clay in them, though the

surrounding ground was very muddy. Neither could the

investigators from UFO Sweden find any traces leading to the

circles from the edge of the field. Both circles were swept

clockwise and Mats Nilsson, who investigated the site on the

evening of July 6th, described the interior of the circles "as

smooth as a ballroom floor".

But this is only the beginning. UFO Sweden has since learnt of

ten other locations in Sweden where crop circles appeared:-

* July 17, Harplinge, 12 km NW of Halmstad. On circle 14.85 metre

in diameter in a rye field. Counter-clockwise.

* July 29, Skyllberg, 19 km SSW of Hallsberg. Complicated circle

with two rings connected with spokes in barley. Clockwise at the

centre. Counter-clockwise elsewhere. Total diameter 36.4 metres.

* July 30, Asperud, 20 kms SSW of Hallsberg. Circle with two

rings and a reversed letter F in autumn wheat. Total diameter

88.4 metres. Counter-clockwise.

* July 30, Bracke, 20 kms NNW of Helsingborg, near Hoganas. Oval

circle in a wheat field. Counter-clockwise.

* July 31, Ljungby, 12 kms NE of Falkenberg. Slightly oval circle

in barley. 14.88-16.29 metres in diameter. Counter-clockwise.

* August 21, Save Depa, north of Gothenburg. Slightly oval circle

in oats. 9.9-10.4 metres in diameter. Counter-clockwise.

* August 21, Waro Norrgard near Linkoping. Circle 8 metres in

diameter with a 20 metre long straight extension in autumn wheat.


* September 3, Tjarna Angar, 1.5 kms from Borlange. 27.7 metres

long pictogram in a barley field. There was a reversed F with a


* September 4, Knarrholmen, Orsa. 39 metre long pictogram.

* Early September, Hamnas near Soderhamn. 7-8 rings. 3-4 metres

in diameter in barley.

In the case of the Hamnas rings both the farmer and the

investigator Karl-Erik Johansson from the Gavleborg UFO Group

"unmasked the villains" as roe-deers.

Hoaxers Exposed

The following circle formations have been exposed as hoaxes:-

Skyllberg, Asperud, Save Depa, Orsa and Tjarna Angar.

As for the circles at Harplinge, Bracke and Ljungby everything

points to the fact that they were made by the same group of

hoaxers. They were almost all identical in size, their location

(by the side of a road) was chosen for maximum exposure and the

sweeping (counter-clockwise) swirl is typical of a man-made


The circle at Waro Norrgard was in such poor condition that it

was impossible to investigate it.

The two circles in Sala are the only ones UFO Sweden consider to

be potentially important. We have found no traces of clay inside

the circles, although the field was very muddy and we were there

before anyone else.

Whether genuine or man-made the circles have attracted a lot of

curious people, each with their own favourite theory.

The most inured person is probably farmer Olle Johansson at

Harplinge, whose almost 15 metre diameter circle became known all

over Sweden following his appearance on the "Night Cafe"

programme :

"Lots of people have been here," he told UFO Aktuellt, "A woman

even ate the rye believing it held supernatural powers".

When Inga-Lill Wallin from UFO-Sweden visited the site another

woman was meditating in the middle of the circle. The woman had

flown down from Stockholm and taken a taxi out to Harplinge with

the sole purpose of spending an hour or so in the circle.

"What if it is not genuine ?", Inga-Lill Wallin suggested to the


"I really hope it is", she answered.

Strange Lights

When a circle is discovered, reports on other events - which are

quickly linked to the circles, inevitably pop up. In several

cases, including those at Harplinge, light phenomena have also

been reported. But on closer scrutiny it can be demonstrated that

these light phenomena were not seen when the the circles


In the case of the fake circle at Save Depa, north of Gothenburg,

a man claimed to have seen mysterious lights in the sky on the

same night as the circle appeared. When Anders Persson

interviewed the man it turned out that his sighting could not be

linked to the circle as the man had probably seen spotlights

reflected off clouds.

Also, the fake circle at Orsa has been linked to observations of

lights in the sky.

This kind of linking of two unconnected events - "guilt by

association" - is common in UFOlogy. Frequently the only common

denominator is the fact that the two events concerned something

unidentified. It is so easy to see a link which is not there.

The link between UFOs and circles is very weak, all things

considered. Not on any occasion has an unidentified object been

observed at the same time as a circle has formed.

A detail often presented as evidence that a circle is genuine -

that is not made by humans - is the fact that the the stems are

not broken. It is hard to understand this argument since stems

only break when they are very dry. In moist weather, particularly

like this, the straws are soft and lithe. The fake circle in Orsa

is a good example of this.

The problem is that even the most hardened sceptics soften at the

sight of a circle. Many are sheer works of art. Even if most of

the Swedish specimens this summer have been relatively simple and

lacking the English extravagances, there have been exceptions,

like the "Atlantis" circle at Skyllberg.

Investigations conducted by UFO Sweden showed that the

neighbouring circles at Skyllberg and Asperud were made by the

same persons. In the latter circle obvious traces of the hoaxer's

tools were found.

There is all the reason in the world to keep your cool as far as

the crop circles are concerned. The most probable explanation is

that almost all of them are made by men in order to deceive

other men. Maybe a few of them are caused by some natural

phenomenon, but after this year's crop of hoaxes I am no longer

ready to bet on it.

Clas Svahn, UFO Sweden, Stockholm.

PF Notes:- I hope Clas Svahn will forgive me for some of the

small grammatical changes I've made to his text. Also my super PC

can't do any of those funny superscripts that feature heavily in

Scandinavian place names. Sorry. Readers will be interested to

learn that when Clas Svahn isn't investigating Sweden's outbreak

of crop circle hoaxing he is covering world-shaking events like

the siege of the White House in Moscow for Sweden's largest daily

newspaper Dagens Nyheter. UFO Sweden has over a thousand members

and is well known for adopting a sceptical approach to UFO

research and investigation. Svahn's article tells us a great deal

about how the UFO myth is being revived by people who don't give

a damn about the farmers and their feelings. It also demonstrates

how a whole new religion can be created and maintained by a

handful of people who simply don't want to know the truth. Isn't

anyone out there going to stop them ? Thanks to Clas Svahn and

UFO Sweden.

Fuller Resigns from BUFORA

Its Official !!!

Those readers who are also members of the British UFO Research

Association - BUFORA - will be interested to learn that on

September 11th 1993 I resigned my positions of Director, a member

of BUFORA's National Investigations Committee and ordinary

member. I had been members of these for 5, 10 and 15 years

respectively. I won't go into all the details of this decision

just yet but I will explain that I left BUFORA over important

issues of principle. My letter of resignation should be held in

BUFORA's records and I have asked Jenny Randles to retain a copy

for the N.I.C.

It is sad to leave an organisation I have supported for so long

but recent events really left me with little alternative. I would

like to record my continuing support for the invaluable work of

the N.I.C., the only part of BUFORA that continues to hold my

respect and admiration. My reasons for leaving can be best summed

up by quoting the lyrics from "Animals", one of Pink Floyd's

greatest and most cynical albums (now that really does date me


"You gotta be crazy, you gotta have a real need. You gotta sleep

on your toes and when you're on the street. You gotta be able to

pick out the easy meat with your eyes closed. And then moving in

silently, down wind and out of sight. You gotta strike when the

moment is right without thinking.

And after a while, you can work on points for style. Like the

club tie, and the firm handshake. A certain look in the eye and

an easy smile. You have to be trusted by the people that you lie

to, so that when they turn their backs on you, you'll get the

chance to put the knife in...."

The Beckhampton &

District Informer

This superb magazine has been doing the rounds for some time

now -I've only been sent volume 1 nos 3 to 5 - but its a must for

anyone who wants to know the truth behind the crop circles. As

far as I can tell this is a free publication but if you want to

get on the mailing list just write something stupid for "The

Circular", "The Cerealogist" or "The Crop Watcher" - you're bound

to get a copy !

Issue 3 is the least libellous. Apparently Peter Sorenson (see

CW18 page 32) is shortly to have an operation to remove a video

camera from his right eye. Unhappily Mr "Sarsen" has had a video

camera "grafted to his face since birth". This has resulted in

the growth of a "ridiculous beard" ! There is also a "Season

Update" of "Genuine Formations" by James Chapman (a blank page)

as well as a Doug and Dave "Propaganda Quiz".

Issue 4 contains an expose of "Weaselgate" - the subject of

George Wingfield's belated article in "The Cerealogist" about

insider crop circle hoaxing in the CCCS. In an interview with The

Informer's "disinformation correspondent" "The Weasel" (John

Martineau) confesses to how he managed to "infiltrate a well

known circle research group 'Circle Investigation Group And

Research Examining The Extra-Terrestrial Entity Scam (CIGARETTES)

and a smaller, more local group 'Phenomenon Action Group'

(PhAG)." According to The Informer "Me and some mates would go

out at night and hoax a major pictogram somewhere like East

Field. The next day I would go out at night and record it in the

CIGARETTES database as genuine. Everyone in the group knew what

was going on. CIGARETTES would declare the pictogram as being

genuine, 100 % confident that another hoaxing team could not

produce any evidence that they had made it, thus revealing the

truth about the nature of the crop circles. It was so simple !"

There is also an excellent article about the Penis that appeared

near Chequers. Apparently a "TW*T" seen taking photographs of the

formation was Erik Beckjord ! This is followed by a hoaxer's

vehicle registration quiz (won in the next issue by Grant

Wakefield, who is disqualified because his car number is also

included in the list). There's also a TIFINAG quiz, which is very

amusing, as well as the "Waggon & Horses Top 10 Records". Judging

from the '60s and '70s groups that feature in this "hit parade"

from the jukebox shortly to be installed in the Tack Room at the

Waggon & Horses it seems clear that the editors of this

scurrilous rag must be a little older than myself, say 35 to 40.

Now does that give you a clue to their identity ???

Issue Number 5 leads with an exclusive report on The Doug Bower

Enigma. According to The Informer's "Crime Correspondent" Doug

Bower is none other than Ernest Henry Bryant, who was contacted

by Venusians at Scoriton in 1965 (another famous UFO case where a

number of leading UFOlogists got their fingers badly burnt). Some

of the comments in this issue are even more cutting than those

that appear in The Crop Watcher ! In one article Grant Wakefield

is described as "an arrogant little snot" whilst Maria Ward is

described as a "l**r" who "dresses like a cheap t**t" and Richard

Andrews is dismissed as a "c***l*t*n dowser". Listen carefully

and you can hear the Libel Lawyers rubbing their hands with glee

!!! There is also the full unabridged story of George Wingfield's

angry response to the revelation that John Martineau was behind

much of the hoaxing that undermined Project Argus ("this

ridiculous so-called scientific exercise" according to Robert

Irving). There is also a recap on the fabrication of the letter

from "Roy Marks" -the one that dismissed Robert Irving as a

"psychopath". This was allegedly written by Maria Ward as a ploy

to discredit Irving, who features in another article disclaiming

his circle-making

activities and membership of M.I.5 ! All these issues are an

absolute scream !!!

Other News

Chris Rutkowski has written in to comment on the "Squashed

Porcupine" case discussed in CW17. According to Chris the carcass

was never actually seen by Chad Deetken, the carcass was never

examined by a veterinary pathologist and dead animals naturally

"deflate" after death through decay and decomposition. For

Deetken's own account of this bizarre case see "The Cerealogist"

issue 10. Don't forget that despite Deetken's claims animal

mutilation cases and crop circles HAVE been associated before

(see CW17) Re-reading this case summary again it is not difficult

to re-interpret this particular squashed animal case as a hoax.

Why else would the farmer dispose of the carcass and THEN

telephone a UFO investigator ???

The Yorkshire & Humberside CCCS has just produced an excellent

case summary of the two known formations in Yorkshire during

1993. The first was a standard dumb-bell at Blansby Park near

Pickering that formed in late July. The second was a ringed-star

at Arras Hill near Market Weighton which appeared in late August.

For copies of this material write to John Holman, 20 Newton

Gardens, Ripon, North Yorkshire, HG4 1QF.

Rumours and Rumours of Rumours

Colin Andrews has given his United Nations talk about crop

circles, the General Assembly was suitably alarmed ... In his

recent visit to Malta Colin Andrews spoke to a "gathering" of

"United Nations representatives" from several countries that keep

"open minds on such matters from UFOs to circles in the corn"...

Andrews expects to be offered a job by the United Nations to

research the

phenomenon ... The Ministry of Defence has joined in a "debate"

with Andrews to discuss the "increasingly numerous sightings of

UFOs with the corn circles" (all from the infallible "Andover

Advertiser", 13th August 1993) ... George Wingfield's "hice" is

up for sale ... There will be a special BBC documentary about

crop circles in November ... this will be further disinformation

from MBF Services to keep the truth about the crop circles from

the public ... Reg Presley ("Wild Thing") is writing a book about

crop circles with Colin Andrews ("Wild Thing") .... Robin Allen

and George Wingfield exchanged pleasantries at the Dorchester

Cornference ...


Crop Circles, A Mystery Solved has been completely updated and

republished in a second edition. Available from Robert Hale Ltd,

Clerkenwell House, Clerkenwell Green, London, EC1R 0HT, price #

7.99. Contains previously unpublished photographs of the Wokurna

(1973), Bordertown (1973) and Rossburn (1977) circles, along with

numerous historical cases, new eye witness testimony and a

detailed account of the crop circle crash of 1991-1993.

Wanted: During the late 1970s and early 1980s, a magazine called

"PICWINNARD" was published in the west country. It was sub-

titled 'a magazine of Wessex leys and folklore'. If anyone has

copies of this magazine I'd like to buy them. Failing that, I'll

be happy to pay for photocopies.

For Sale: I have for sale, several masonic aprons, price on

application. Please write to P.D. Rendall, 46, Partridge Road,

Pucklechurch, Bristol, Avon, BS17 3SP.

The Crop Watcher is an independent non-profit-making magazine

devoted to the scientific study of crop circles and the social

mythology that accompanies them. All articles are copyright to

the authors and should not be reproduced without obtaining

written permission from the authors. Articles appearing in The

Crop Watcher do not necessarily reflect the views of the Editor

or other contributors. Readers are welcome to submit articles for

publication. Offers of exchange magazines are always welcome.


The Crop Watcher is published six times a year and costs # 1.50

to UK subscribers and # 2.50 to overseas subscribers. A full

year's subscription costs # 9.00 for UK subscribers and # 15.00

for overseas subscribers. Please make cheques payable to "Paul

Fuller" not "The Crop Watcher". Overseas subscribers should not

send cheques drawn on overseas banks as these attract a

commission of about # 10.00 each. Subscriptions can be sent via

an International Money Order. All correspondence should be sent

to 3, Selborne Court, Tavistock Close, Romsey, Hampshire, SO51



Chris Rutkowski -

University of Manitoba - Winnipeg, Canada