Listen: Tapes shed light on forest’s UFO riddle

TAPE recordings of US airmen investigating a potential UFO landing shed more light on one of Suffolk’s greatest unsolved mysteries.

The 30th anniversary of the Rendlesham Forest “incident” is fast approaching.

The East Anglian Daily Times and BBC Radio Suffolk want to find out what really happened and have joined forces in a bid to unearth the truth.

The tape recordings are a vivid account of what personnel from the nearby USAF Bentwaters air base discovered when they went to investigate in the dead of the night just after Christmas 1980.

The men were led by Colonel Charles Halt, who was second in command at the base, and it is clear they thought they were witnessing some type of phenomena – with descriptions of “strange” lights in sky and odd damage to pine trees 15-18ft off the ground.

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The tape continues: “I hear very strange sounds of farmers’ barn yard animals. They’re very, very active, making a lot of noise.

“Straight ahead. There it is again. Straight ahead. What is it? A strange small red light. It looks maybe half a mile further ahead. Go back to the edge of the clearing, see if we can get a look at it... the animals have gone quiet now... It is deathly calm.

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“There is no doubt about it – it is a strange flashing red light ahead. I saw a yellow tinge in it too. Weird. It’s coming this way. It’s definitely coming this way. There is no doubt about it. This is weird.”

Despite endless speculation, there has never been a definitive answer to what actually happened that night.

There are a number of different theories – everything from aliens landing and lights from Orford lighthouse to a mishap which was covered up.

The EADT’s and BBC Radio Suffolk’s “Rendlesham Revealed” investigation will aim to unlock the mystery.

The paper has already been contacted by one reader who remembers seeing lights in the sky close to Wickham Market on that December evening.

The woman, who asked not to be named, said: “I saw something flying in the sky with lights. It definitely wasn’t a helicopter. It landed in a meadow near Wickham Market.”

If you saw anything at Rendlesham that night, or you know anything about the incident write to the EADT at: Rendlesham Revealed, c/o The Editor, East Anglian Daily Times, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN, or e-mail

Alternatively contact Mark Murphy via e-mail at

n To hear extracts from the tapes visit

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