The Berwyn Mountain Incident, widely referred to as the 'Welsh Roswell' is, next to the Rendlesham Forest Incident of 1980, (referred to as the British Roswell) the world famous and most well known British UFO crash story to date. However, due to the research of Andy J. Roberts , it is widely regarded as a misunderstanding and far from a UFO incident . The incident took place on the Berwyn Mountains in Llandrillo, Merionethshire, North Wales. Skeptics claim it was a result of the combined misinterpretation of a meteor shower widely observed over Wales and Northern England, a small earthquake, and the activity of poachers.
The event took place on the 23rd of January 1974. It has been alleged that a UFO crashed, and that non-human bodies (EBEs) were found and that the British Government covered up the event. There was considerable uncertainty at the time as to exactly what had happened. First reactions were that a plane had crashed, or a meteorite had landed.
Police were alerted and set up a search team; within an hour about ten officers were searching the Berwyn Mountains; they were joined later by an RAF mountain rescue team from Valley (Anglesey). Nothing was found, and all searches were called off at just after 2 P.M. the following day. Searches for meteorite impact craters were also made by a couple of astronomers, equally without result.
By this time, it was clear from data gathered by the then Institute of Geological Sciences (IGS), now British Geological Survey that an earthquake had occurred. The magnitude of the shock was such that, if it had been due to impact, the resulting crater would have been so large as to be easily visible.
There were later claims that the area was cordoned off by the military while wreckage was recovered. Also, there were reports that the villages in the vicinity were visited by "Men in Black".
Sceptics attribute the reports to a mixture of an earthquake, a meteor shower, and the activities of poachers.
At 8.38 P.M. on 23 January, 1974, an earthquake of magnitude 3.5 was felt over a wide area of North Wales and as far as Liverpool. Since earthquakes are uncommon in the UK, it was not generally recognized for what it was, and since a number of unusual lights in the sky had been observed the same evening, it was considered possible that an aircraft had crashed, or a meteorite had impacted. Further confusion was caused by lights seen on the Berwyn Mountains, which subsequently turned out to have belonged to poachers. This confusion was later mythologized into the account of the UFO crash.
The claim that the area was cordoned off by the military have been shown by Andy Roberts to relate to a later event in 1982 when an RAF Harrier jet crashed in the area, and the mountain was indeed cordoned off. The two events were subsequently merged in folk memory. Similarly the reports of the Men in Black figures were actually folk memories of three seismologists from IGS who were collecting felt reports of the earthquake.
By Natalie Jones
CONFIDENTIAL Ministry of Defence files on Unidentified Flying Objects are set to be made public.
Hundreds of documented sightings of UFOs across the UK will be released by the MoD to the National Archive in the coming weeks.