U.P.R.I.S.I.N.G. case report
Author; Ren Hil
Sighting time and date; September 1997, possible Saturday, approx 5 pm
Location; Cowbridge to Bridgend A4222, first spotted Blenheim Chase, Southend on Sea
Witness name; Jane O Connell
Jane posted on the U.P.R.I.S.I.N.G Facebook group, stating that she had had a sighting. We contacted her and asked if we could discuss this sighting in more detail and she agreed to us writing up this case report and investigating the sighting.
We asked Jane a few questions and asked her to describe what happened in as much detail as possible. This is her story, in her own words:
“This is hard! It was about 5 pm in September approx 1997. My daughter & I were driving home from Cowbridge to Bridgend on the a4222. I have put a marker on the map where we first caught sight. As we drove along we spotted something to our left. It was low down and seemed to move slowly over heading to the right. This is where it gets hard. It was opaque and almost amoeba-like. My daughter said at the time like a jellyfish. There were lights inside, I guess a bit like an led strip light. It is hard to describe. It was almost over us. We were amazed & in awe but quite frankly wanted to get away as fast as possible. My daughter (who was 13) told me to “floor it”. I could see it in my rearview mirror & my daughter was turned around watching it until it was no longer visible.”
“We didn’t have mobile phones obviously. It was a dry day. A Saturday. The following day we made enquiries in Cowbridge to find out if there had been any events happening ..ie. shows or balloon flights…anything to try & explain it. But we knew that we had seen something that could not be explained. To my knowledge, nobody else said they had seen anything but who knows. We didn’t have Facebook then! That road was a quiet road back then & I don’t recall seeing any other cars. The whole sighting probably lasted about a minute I suppose as we were driving. Not much else to add but contact me if you want any other info I haven’t thought of. Ah just thought… I did slow when we got a little closer to look but honestly, I was scared & wanted out of there!”
Having looked at several similar genuine sightings over the years it does appear many sea-like phenomena have been spotted in the skies. Unfortunately, none of the images of these matched the above sighting, however, while investigating this sighting, I came across a similar sighting with what was described as a translucent bubble, this was in the spring of 1997 and reported to Margaret Fry and was included in a report found at www.babiafi.co.uk and states: “Margaret Fry submitted a report on a family’s multiple sightings over a period of decades to Awareness V26/N4, including one from 1997: In the spring of 1997 Julie Dickson was with her mother-in-law in a car when they were passing through Fishguard, near South Wales, and were heading for Blaenau Ffestiniog, when they saw what looked like a round glass bubble about 5ft in diameter come down slowly, it was flying in a controlled way, and then hovered over a house roof. It did not appear to have anything in it, but that could have been the effect of the material it was composed of.”
Unfortunately, I have been unable to find information on the witness to contact and Margaret Fry has now passed on however she and fellow Ufologists wrote a book titled ‘Link to the stars’ which holds references to Welsh sightings including this one. We also looked at the phenomena known as ‘sprites’, a transient luminous event, or TLE, that visits stormy skies for just a split second. TLEs are products of the crackling electrical activity that accompanies big, busy thunderstorms. The object seen was jellyfish-like however it is very rare to witness a blue sprite and the weather conditions do not match what is required for this phenomenon to occur. I have asked for a drawing of the sighting and will update the report if I get any further information or if any other witnesses come forward.