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Derek's close encounter
WHEN you claim to have film of a buffalo being beamed up into a UFO, then you can expect to attract plenty of attention.
North Hampshire pensioner Derek Bridges has this week found himself in the local and national spotlight after word spread of his weird out-of-this-world experience.
The 69-year-old retired airport worker told The Gazette he witnessed the strange sighting from his window at The Green, in Overton, in late September.
His video shows two bright lights hovering over Laverstoke Park Farm in Overton, where water buffalo are kept.
The footage has been passed to UFO organisations across the world and is being described as “the Holy Grail” for UFO enthusiasts.
Mr Bridges, who has studied UFO activity in the borough for more than 15 years, said: “I saw something dark red and glowing and I waited about 20 minutes and then a big bright light appeared. It was so bright that it could blind you.
“I got my camera and filmed it and then it disappeared. I didn’t know what it was at the time.”
It was only after the incident that Mr Bridges realised an animal could be seen in the footage.
He said: “I took it to the British Earth and Aerial Mysteries Society (BEAMS) and we put it on a bigger picture and we saw a beam coming from the light.
“It’s the only one that has ever been filmed in the world and I filmed it. I can’t say that I’m disappointed.”
Kenneth Parsons, chairman of BEAMS, said he was planning to film at the farm next week to prove the sighting was the real thing.
He added: “We are going to prove that it wasn’t a street lamp because there are only fields over there. I’m very impressed with it. To us it’s like finding the Holy Grail.
“In the USA, there have been cows lifted towards the sky. What they (extra-terrestrials) do is take the cattle and drain its blood. They remove parts of the body and dump it back again. I have never seen anything like this before.”
Sara Whittall, from Laverstoke Park Farm, owned by former Formula One Champion Jody Sheckter, said none of their buffalo had gone missing.
She added: “They have all been accounted for. We are well-known locally and nationally but now we have gone into a different galaxy where the aliens are coming to get our buffalo burgers.”
A spokeswoman for the Ministry of Defence said it would not be investigating the incident.
She added: “The MoD examines reports solely to establish whether UK airspace may have been compromised by hostile or unauthorised military activity.”
Mr Bridges said Overton is a “hot spot” for UFO activity. He added: “I see a lot of things out here. I’ve got an eye for it. It’s fantastic looking at something that could be from somewhere else. I’m quite drawn to it.
“I’m aware that a lot of people are sceptical and I don’t blame them. People have the right to think what they like, but seeing is believing.”
l You can see Mr Bridges’ UFO footage by logging on to basingstoke gazette.co.uk/ news.