THE mystery surrounding sightings of Unidentified Flying Objects over Morecambe Bay two days after Christmas may have been solved.
A Visitor reader has come forward to say he thinks the flying saucers were actually Chinese lanterns he had lit and launched at a party.
As featured in last week's Visitor, a local resident had posted a ufo sighting on a national website and said he was 'freaked out' by what he saw.
Roy Thornton, who lives near the York Hotel said: "I was at Lathom Avenue, Morecambe, at a party on December 27, at the same time this man said he saw the ufos.
"At around 10pm we lit one of the lanterns and let it go.
"Then we lit two more and let them go.
"On the Sunday night we let off four more.
"The lanterns go a mile high before they burn out.
"We told everyone at the party about the write-up in the paper about the ufos and from the time, description and the way he saw one, and then two, it must have been the lanterns."
Roy, director of Search First, on Victoria Street, which offers website services, added: "I just want to put this bloke's mind at rest.
"At least we're not going to get kidnapped by aliens!"
A similar UFO mystery gripped Furness during the festive period, when unidentified flying objects seen in the area turned out to be Chinese lantern balloons released as part of an Askam couple's wedding celebrations.
Another explanation for the sightings comes from keen local fisherman, Sean Herity, who called to say that he'd often heard other anglers pointing out strange lights in the sky which turned out to be gulls.
Evidently the gulls, in certain conditions, can reflect various man-made lights along the seafront, taking on a range of different hues.
He told The Visitor: "Depending on what light they are reflecting, they can be orange, yellow or even blue-ish.
"And, of course, they can hover then change speed and direction very quickly. Add in the fact that it's often difficult, in fading light, to judge perspective and you can see why people find the lights difficult to explain and report them as UFOs."
*For more information about ufo sightings across the country, visit www.ufoinfo.com.
* Thanks to www.iwantoneofthose.com for sending Roy a free pack of Chinese Khoom Fay lanterns.