10 min readSep 14, 2021

"Plasma ball" UFO/UAP, Todmorden, 7th June, 2021.

By Lee Nicholson.

Artistic representation. Credit: Victoria Morris, Incredible Creations Ltd.

On Monday the 7th of June, a highly unusual "plasma ball" like object was witnessed over the Gaddings Dam area of Todmorden, UK. It was observed for some "8-9 minutes" before rising in a bizarre "zig zig" pattern and disappearing abruptly with a localised flash. All of this just 10 miles to the South and four months after our previous "Portal" report from Colne, on the 22nd Feb this year. 1.

The Sighting:

The witness initially posted the following on a local social media group:

"Did anyone see the strange lit up thing in the sky this evening about 22:20 ish? It went up and up and up, no noise then disappeared into cloud then a big flash. We were looking from Cross Stone over above Shepherd’s Rest." 2.

We are familiar with this part of Todmorden, having visited the Shepherd’s Rest last year. We had also spent many hours walking the hills close to Gaddings dam, searching for clues as to who (or what?) had killed and mutilated a young Jersey calf on the 5th July, almost one year ago. 3.

The close proximity of this new UFO event was too close to ignore and immediately caught our attention. We contacted the witness and she promptly and kindly responded. On this occasion the witness and her husband prefer anonymity and therefore will be referred to as "Mrs C" or "MC" throughout this article.

"Mrs C" sent the following more detailed description via Messenger:

"It was approx 10:20 in the evening, twighlight. My attention was drawn out the window to a moving light along the brow of a hill opposite ( the same hill which Longfield Equestrian Centre and The Shepherds Rest is on). I knew a car couldn’t be where the lights were. I called my husband in to see too. It looked like a huge middle of a plasma ball (the crackling lightening arms) they were glowing very bright orange/yellow, my husband opened the window but we heard no noise. It moved from side to side going upwards into a cloud, then there was a huge orange/yellow flash within the cloud a bit like sheet lightening but just in the cloud and then nothing. Very, very strange, I have no idea what it was, someone suggested a helicopter in stealth mode, I honestly can’t see that it was that because of the shape of the lit up bits and the definite side to side movements." 4.

Questions & Answers:

Following this, I sent a series of questions in order to gather as much information as possible. “Mrs C” responded as follows:

LN - "How long did the sighting event last, roughly?"

MC - "I would say the sighting lasted approx 8-9 minutes. "

LN - "Could you describe the flight path and movement of the object in as much detail as possible? You said it was flying along the hillside near to Gaddings dam, (facing roughly South?) was the movement your left to right, or right to left? You said it then moved side to side and upwards?"

MC - If I am looking across at Gaddings Dam the “thing” came from the right ( near the windmills, moved across to my left, then moved in a short zig zag pattern going upwards in stages."

LN - "How large was the object compared to the Moon, for example?"

MC - "In comparison to the moon it was smaller looking."

LN - "Would you say it was spherical, like a plasma ball, or was just the centre portion visible giving a different shape?

MC - "It was very, very bright, orange/yellow crackles / arms ( like a plasma ball outwards) , possibly about 5 arms out. Only the central portion was visible and lit, there appeared to be no outline."

LN - "Could you describe the way the object disappeared into the cloud? Any reflection, was it visible through the cloud? What colour was the flash? How large/much area of sky was illuminated?"

MC - "It was visible in the cloud, my husband had already opened the window but it made no sound at all. The flash was only in the cloud, it seemed to light up all the inside of the cloud this orange/yellow light then nothing. No bits falling, nothing rising, nothing darting about, no sound just nothing."

LN - "Have you noticed anything unusual before or since the sighting? (Military helicopters for example)"

MC - "We haven’t noticed anything unusual before or after at all, you do get the occasional helicopter at times but not where this was and the helicopters are quite loud.

As we said, we have no idea what it was but it was odd , never seen anything like it before."


Reconstruction of the event. Credit: Victoria Morris, Incredible Creations Ltd.

The image above is a reconstruction of the sighting and was created using a photo of the location provided by "Mrs C". Arrows depict the motion of the object, as described by the witnesses.


The witness kindly sent the following video description of the event -

Sighting Analysis:

The description of this object is highly unusual and does not fit with any conventional aircraft, atmospheric phenomena, or even most other UFO reports that I am aware of. "Mrs C" explained that the object looked like the "inside of a plasma ball, but without the central core", that the "crackling arms" were very bright, orange/yellow in colour and "did not not move, or change at all" during the entire event!

She also pointed out that the UFO seemed to follow the contour of the opposite hillside, which implies multiple altitude shifts. The distance covered in "8-9 minutes" was roughly 5 miles according to Google maps. Using an online calculator (5) this works out at an average speed of 33.3 mph (28.937 knots), which is less than the stall speed of most conventional light aircraft.

The "zig zig" or "side to side" vertical ascent is also extremely unusual for any kind of aircraft. I asked if it was possible that this object may have been flying in a corkscrew or spiral flight path, ‘Mrs C’ responded; “It was even and controlled definitely not spiral” and “It was very measured movement, very controlled not erratic at all”. One UAP characteristic frequently reported is sudden 180° turns another is ‘zig zag’ flight paths.

Finally, the concept of an aircraft simply disappearing in a flash of "orange/yellow sheet lighting" without leaving any wreckage is simply impossible. Yet the witness clearly told me she could see the object in the cloud, prior the flash and nothing after; "No bits falling, nothing rising, nothing darting about, no sound just nothing." Given that the colour and localised nature of this match that of the unknown object, it seems highly likely that it was generated by the object itself. Perhaps as a form of propulsion? All we know for certain is after that, it was gone.

The witness also commented that the object appeared larger than the tractors she often sees on the opposite hillside. After a little bit of research, it seems that would suggest an object of at least 10 - 15 feet in diameter, possibly more.

Considering all of the above it is extremely difficult to think of any conventional explanation for what the witness and her husband observed that night.

Site visit:

On Saturday the 26th of June we were finally available to visit the area around Gaddings Dam and The Shepherd's Rest Inn again. We spent several hours walking the area, taking readings on a phone based EMF meter and visually scanning with an Infrared camera (Sionyx aurora sport). Nothing unusual, or out of place, was observed or detected.

Signpost for Gaddings Dam with The Shepherd’s Rest in the background. Credit: Lee Nicholson.
View from the hillside near Gaddings Dam. Credit: Lee Nicholson.
Gaddings Dam itself with a WW2 bomber (complete with ‘invasion stripes’) just visible in the background. Credit: Lee Nicholson.
Map depicting object flight path and witness viewpoint. Sheep mutilation from 2002, Calf mutilation from 2020 and Alan Godfrey’s 1980 encounter also marked. Credit: Google maps.

Calf mutilation:

As mentioned previously, on the 5th July, 2020 a mutilated calf was discovered not far from Gaddings Dam and the Shepherd’s Rest by Mr Albert Tyas. Thankfully he had the presence of mind to take eight close up pictures, which make for disturbing viewing. The unfortunate animal displayed several large, open wounds, with extremely clean and unusual bloodless cuts. Read the full report here.

For those not familiar with the controversial 'Animal mutilation' phenomenon and it’s association with UFOs and other paranormal events. Researchers, such as; Thomas Adams, David Perkins, Linda Moulton-Howe and Christopher O’Brien, along with Paul Sinclair, Phil Hoyle and David Cayton in the UK, have been documenting instances of unexplained animal deaths for decades. Case files number in the tens of thousands and when veterinary experts are consulted the consensus is that some form of advanced technology seems to be involved. 6.

UK based researcher, David Cayton, shared details of a sheep mutilation with me, which occurred on a farm very close to the Shepherd’s Rest back in 2002. He has reason to believe other incidents also occurred in the intervening years, but were not reported. 7.

Following the calf mutilation last year, we were unable to find any UFO sighting reports from the area, despite a direct inquiry with the Shepherd’s Rest. Which makes this recent incident all the more interesting.

Todmorden the 'UFO Valley':

As most readers will know, Todmorden has a rich history of unexplained objects in the sky stretching back decades. Just recently Paul Weatherhead, author of ‘Weird Calderdale' shared a fascinating UFO report from September, 1932 which involved a multi coloured sphere near Stoodley Pike, in almost the same area as the report above. 8. Another report from 1980, again near Gaddings Dam appeared in the comments:

“That is very interesting, my mother saw a very similar thing in the '80s trace across the same skyline from gaddins way to pike;, she didn’t mention the colour green but from yellows thru oranges then reds before it shot off in the direction it came from . She saw it more than once.” 9.

Perhaps the most significant event to date, occurred on the 28th of November, 1980, when PC Alan Godfrey encountered a diamond shaped craft hovering over Manchester road whilst on patrol. 10. PC Godfrey’s story is well known, but one lesser known fact is, that night he was investigating a herd of missing cows which had mysteriously escaped. Following his experience PC Godfrey and another officer located the cows inside a locked park, in the middle of a rugby pitch, on a rainy night with no hoof marks leading to the area. PC Godfrey told Michael Aspel in a episode of Strange but True; "it just looked as though.. plop.. someone had dropped them there, you know?" 11.

UK Government Statement on UAP:

The UFO/UAP issue has become a critical National Security concern in the United States in recent months. With a call for the Pentagon’s UAP Task Force to be formalized into an official office, 12. Multiple public statements from high level officials, media coverage at an all time high and Congress and NASA known to be receiving regular briefings on the topic. 13.

Here in the UK the MoD’s response has been rather weak, at least officially. Questions raised in the House of Lords by Lord Sarfraz on the 30th of June produced the following dismissive statement from Baroness Goldie, Minister of State for Defence:

"As I indicated earlier, we have no opinion on the existence of extraterrestrial life and we no longer investigate reports of sightings of unidentified aerial phenomena. We have no plans to conduct our own report into UAP, because in over 50 years no such reporting has indicated the existence of any military threat to the UK." 14?

This statement is vastly at odds with the American government position on the UAP subject. Considering recent and ongoing incursions into UK airspace by unexplained aerial phenomena, we can only hope that the MoD 'catch on' pretty quickly. Especially in light of the recent US call for cooperation with its Allies. Unless, of course, there is more going on behind the scenes?

Here at Anomalous-Eye and UFOs over Pendle we will continue to watch the skies, document and report strange and unusual incidents in our area and keep up to speed with developments at home and around the world.

(If you have information relevant to our field of interest, please don't hesitate to get in touch.)

Notes and References:


2. Post on social media archived by this author and omitted to protect witnesses.


4. Private communications with the witnesses. (Identity known but withheld as requested.)

5. Speed Distance Time Calculator (

6. Animal Mutilation research:

David Perkins -

Thomas Adams -

Linda Moulton-Howe -

Christopher O’Brien -

Paul Sinclair -

David Cayton and Phil Hoyle - Silent

7. Private communications with David Cayton.




11. (Strange but True).





Watching UFO/UAP, Unusual Personal Experiences, Unexplained Animal Mutilations, Cryptids, Paranormal phenomena and other Anomalies in the UK and overseas.