I'm a UFO sceptic. That doesn't mean I don't believe they might exist, but it does mean I will need to see some concrete evidence for their existence before I even consider accepting a reported sighting as possibly genuine. I'm not easily convinced, despite, or perhaps because of, the fact that I spent well over a year helping to run a very popular UFO related forum, and even longer as an avid reader and commenter on a UFO sighting reporting web site.
Over that time I read hundreds of reports, and the vast majority could be easily explained, but the big problem was that nobody on that reporting site wanted to hear a logical explanation, and anyone who dared to offer one, for example little old me, would inevitably be subjected to a torrent of negative, and occasionally abusive, comments. That's normal on such sites, and it's no big deal, but what people don't realise is that while everybody is raving over the latest sighting of a bright white light moving across the sky at night, totally rejecting the idea that it's the International Space Station making one of it's predicted visible orbits, a report of a real, honest to God extraterrestrial craft might well be overlooked, because it's buried under the piles of rubbish.
As you can probably tell, I'm not one to jump to conclusions about a report of a UFO, or Unidentified Flying Object, which means exactly what it says, by the way, not Alien Flying Object, or Extra Terrestrial Object. It simply means something seen in the air, which the observer cannot identify. That's it. Nothing else. The odd thing is that one day I did see a UFO, and I'm using the correct terminology, because it was in the air, and I couldn't identify it. I published my report on the UFO forum, and I repeat it now, slightly modified, from my original draft copy.
Here is my 'sighting', although I'm not sure that it was a 'UFO' in the usual sense. I don't know the exact date, but it was between 1975 and 1987. Various bits of remembered stuff make me fairly sure it was nearer 1980 than 1975, and I had no thoughts that it might be connected with the Rendlesham sightings, so I'm pretty sure it must have been before that story became public. Wikipedia puts the date of the first publication as 2nd October 1983, so I reckon my sighting was between 1979 and 1983. It was a bright sunny day, and I was driving back to Ipswich along the A12 from a job, probably in Lowestoft or Great Yarmouth, so I believe it was mid to late afternoon. I became aware of a bright white/yellowish light in the sky to my left, quite low down. At first I assumed it was an aircraft light of some sort and thought no more of it, as the Woodbridge and Bentwaters air bases were not far away, but it didn't seem to be moving at all. When I reached the junction of the A12 with the A1094 Aldeburgh Rd, I stopped in the layby which used to be there and got out to have a proper look. ( map reference 52.191763,1.468858 ). Another car was parked there and two men were looking at the light, which was at more or less a right angle from the A12, ie to the right of the A1094 from where we stood. At that time it was possible to see a row of electricity pylons in the distance, I believe leading from the Sizewell power station, but nowadays I don't think the pylons are visible due to the growth of trees etc. I noted that the light, still stationary, appeared to be around the height of the pylons from the ground, roughly at the height the actual cables would be. I was trying to work out if the light was nearer or further than the pylons when it just faded out and disappeared. The other men and I looked at each other, shrugged our shoulders, and got back in our vehicles and drove off. That's it, really. Doing research for this posting I realised that the Orfordness lighthouse (52° 05.033' N 001° 34.459' E ) is in the general direction that the light was. I don't know if it would have been visible from the A12, and the light I saw wasn't flashing, just constant. Maybe it was being tested or repaired, or was nothing to do with what I saw, I don't know. The odd thing is that one theory for the Rendlesham mystery lights blames the Orfordness lighthouse as well. I briefly considered the possibility that it may have been Venus, but Venus would not have been visible in that position during the afternoon.
Since posting my sighting I have done a bit more experimenting, using Google Earth, and I've been quite surprised to find that the Orfordness lighthouse is exactly on the line where I believe I saw the light. I set up Google Earth to start from the position and direction I saw the light, and moved forward along the line towards where I saw the light. I kept going forwards without any side to side movement until I reached the coast and was amazed to see the following image. The lighthouse is visible just to the right of centre.
I then set up GE to start from the same position again, to see if I could repeat the above 'journey'. This is the starting position and angle. The green arrow marks the spot I was looking from.
This time I was not quite as successful. When I reached the coast I had missed the lighthouse, but simply 'looking' left gave me this view. The lighthouse is visible on the far left.
I don't know if the lighthouse would have been visible from where I stood, and I'm not sure if it proves anything, but it's certainly odd....
Further research into the various heights of the lighthouse, my viewing position, and the intervening ground levels, plus discussions with other people on the forum with greater knowledge than me, suggested that the Orfordness lighthouse was very unlikely to have been the source of the light, which therefore remains unidentified.
So that's it. I saw a UFO, but whether or not it was ET popping in for a quick visit, I just don't know.
To be honest, I rather doubt it, but you never know...