From: Robert Moore <ENGIMA9@compuserve.com> Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 17:39:03 -0400 Fwd Date: Sat, 10 Apr 1999 03:30:10 -0400 Subject: The Ladybower 'Tornado Pilot' (Sheffield Incident) [Non-subscriber Post] Dear UFO UpDates On reading Max Burn's recent posting to this forum re the "Sheffield Incident", I though some might like to see this extract from a detailed three-part series regarding the "Howden Moors Incident", which appearred in the UK UFO group magazine BUFORA Bulletin. A version of this particular item was published in Part "2" of this series (which appearred in Issue "6" of the Bulletin). This excerpt very clearly demonstrates that the so-called "Ladybower Tornado pilot" story has long been accounted for in rational - and sadly all too human - terms. Regards, Robert Moore IUN. -------------------------------- The Ladybower "Tornado Pilot". Dr. David Clarke & Robert Moore Mr. E.V (a trainee RAF aircraft propulsion mechanic) contacted the police on the night of March 24, 1997, to report seeing a man behaving suspiciously on the A57 "Snake Pass" road at Ladybower near Sheffield. This was roughly one hour after the various 999 calls to police reporting a "plane crash" on Howden Moor. E.V had been returning with a group of friends on a minibus from an outdoor pursuits centre near Glossop at 11pm, which was travelling across the Snake Pass towards Sheffield. When crossing the Ladybower viaduct over the reservoir the bus was flagged down by a man who was acting suspiciously. According to E.V; "[This man] spoke little English and was West Indian or Asian in appearance, with short black hair and a round face. He did not seem to know where he was and just said he wanted to get to Sheffield. The guy was covered in fuel of some sort and from the smell I thought it was paraffin or diesel, but since then I have joined the RAF and I can say it was a smell like aviation fuel. We didn't give the man a lift because the bus was full and we didn't like the look of him, but I thought it was odd because there were no parked cars anywhere near and it was a deserted spot......" When E.V returned home to Rotherham, his parents told him about the search for the mystery plane on the Derbyshire moors, The following morning (on the 25th March) E.V reported this incident to South Yorkshire Police, but heard no more about it. At no time did E.V connect this man with UFOs, aliens or Tornado fighters shot down over the moors. Almost a year later he received a letter from UFO researcher Max Burns (who had obtained his home address from a copy of a log belonging to South Yorkshire Police, provided by a Sheffield-based ufologist). According to E.V, in the letter Burns identified himself as "a journalist working for a national organisation." After asking him to repeat his account of the events Burns asked if he could use his testimony in a story he was working on for a national newspaper (the Sunday tabloid The News of the World). Permission was granted, but according to E.V 's statement on May 12 "at no stage in any of this conversation did Max tell me he was going to use what I told him in a story claiming I had seen the co-pilot of a Tornado which had been shot down by a UFO. Even when the subject of UFOs was aired in a later conversation all Max would say was that "he did not disbelieve in ETs". A few days later, E.V was contacted by a News of the World reporter who asked him "if it would be all right for them to use the story which Max had told them he had said." E.V was subsequently contacted by David Clarke, who interviewed him on two occassions (on May 11 and 12, 1998 respectively) and also discussed this matter with his parents. In the course of his interview E.V was appraised by Clarke of the "type" of story the News Of The World were hoping to run, which was going to using his name and testimony as evidence. He was nothing short of horrified. He told Clarke that Burns had said nothing about any claims about UFOs shooting down Tornadoes, or RAF cover-ups. E.V stated; "I don't know anything about that, all I told him were the facts I remembered from that night, I don't believe he was a pilot for one minute." Shortly after discussing this matter with David Clarke, E.V phoned Max, withdrew permission for the story to go ahead, and asked him not to use his name in connection with these claims as it could put his career in jeopardy. In any event it transpired that the News Of The World never used it. Furthermore, Burns never sent E.V a copy of his report on the Dronfield/Howden Moors event, and when Clarke read him extracts from it he could not believe what he was hearing! In the light of Max Burns' claims, David Clarke questioned him about the clothes this man was wearing. To this question E.V. replied; "They were just ordinary dark clothes. He was definitely not wearing the sort of uniform associated with RAF pilots. I would have recognised that uniform immediately "I don't believe the man I saw was a pilot and if my name were to go in a national newspaper associated with such a claim I could get into serious trouble with my employers, the RAF." Asked how he would react if anyone claimed he had been "silenced" because he had "withdraw" his testimony, E.V responded; " I haven't been silenced by anyone, I just don't want my name connected with a story like this, and that is why I intend to tell Max [Burns] not to involve me any further. I just told him what I saw that night and that is all I know." The statements concerning the "paraffin soaked man" made by E.V to Clarke concurs with the statement E.V made to the police, recorded in the South Yorkshire Police incident log of the incident dated 25th March 1997. Clarke was allowed access to this entry, which read as follows: [Call logged 1808]... "just after 11pm last night he was a passenger in a minibus which was travelling across the Snake Pass back towards Sheffield. When crossing the viaduct over the reservoir at Ladybower, they were flagged down by a man who was walking towards Sheffield. The man said he needed to get to Sheffield and wanted a lift. The minibus was so full it was declined. There were no parked vehicles anywhere in the area. The man smelled strongly of diesel. Said to be of eastern extraction, Indian/Pakistani, and dressed in dark brown clothing." Initially, Clarke queried senior Peak Park Ranger Brian Jones about this event, who remembered the incident straight away. Details concerning a man covered in petrol or paraffin wandering on the Snake Pass that night had in fact been reported to him by the police the next morning. He stated "I do remember the incident as it was reported to the Peak Park Ranger service the next morning. I understand it was a failed suicide attempt. It was someone who had driven out to the country and poured petrol or some other inflammable liquid over himself. But he had not gone through with the suicide. It had been reported to South Yorkshire Police who had passed it to Derbyshire to deal with. It's the sort of thing that happens occasionally in a remote area like this." Clarke then contacted Derbyshire Police Inspector Andy Howard, the duty police inspector at Bakewell, Derbyshire (who was on duty on the night of March 24). Inspector Howard confirmed the incident had occurred as described by the Ranger, but due to its sensitive nature no Press statement had been released at the time. David Clarke (in the course of his job) reports on upwards of 50-100 suicides per year, often by the most gruesome of methods - hanging, carbon monoxide poisoning and overdoses being the three most common in his experience. Every one of these cases obviously has to has to handled careful, considering the trauma of the victim's families and friends. Suicide by pouring petrol or flammable liquid over clothes and then lighting the mixture is also unfortunately quite common, with 2 or 3 deaths per year on average occurring in the Sheffield area. It is a well known fact that potential suicides often utilize isolated spots- like the Peak District - so as to avoid any "rescue" attempts. When a suicide is successful, police reveal details to the Press, a public inquest is held and is reported by journalists. Where a suicide is attempted but not successful, police (as a matter of policy) withhold details from the Press so as not to add to the trauma and suffering of the victim who is often disturbed or mentally ill, which was the case with the March 24th Ladybower Viaduct incident.
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