Photograph apparently showing a 'UFO' over Stonehenge, Wiltshire, in January 2009.The National Archives
Photograph of a 'UFO' in view of Blackpool Pier, Lancashire, in October 2008.The National Archives
The truth is finally out there.
The U.K. government has released the final batch of secret files related to a decades long hunt for little green men -- and revealed that the hunt for aliens was detracting from “more valuable defense-related activities.”
The Ministry of Defense in 2009 closed its UFO desk and hotline, the go-to spot for anyone wishing to warn the government about a recent alien abduction, sighting or any sort of close encounter. The government spent years detailing the accounts from ordinary citizens of such reports, including one from a person who claimed to have been living with an alien.
But despite years or work collecting this information, Carl Mantell of the Royal Air Force's Air Command said that in more than 50 years, "no UFO sighting reported … has ever revealed anything to suggest an extra-terrestrial presence or military threat to the U.K."
According to Sky News, The memo said there was "no defense benefit" in the recording, collating, analysis or investigation of the sightings, adding: "The level of resources diverted to this task is increasing in response to a recent upsurge in reported sightings, diverting staff from more valuable defence-related activities."
Officials predicted a backlash from "ufologists" to the decision to close the UFO desk, Sky News said, and also noted that they had "deliberately avoided formal approaches to other governments on the issue" amid fears of "international collaboration and conspiracy."
The files reveal countless reports, ranging from the banal to the intriguing, that the government had collected between 2007 and 2009:
:: A letter from a school child to the Ministry of Defense asking for the truth about UFOs after she had seen some strange lights, and including a drawing of an alien in a UFO waving.
:: A report received via the UFO hotline by someone who had been "living with an alien" in Carlisle for some time, and one from a man from Cardiff who claimed a UFO abducted his dog, car and tent while he was camping with friends in 2007.
:: Sightings of UFOs over the Houses of Parliament, Stonehenge and Blackpool Pier.
The files also revealed campaigns by ufologists for the Government to investigate sightings more thoroughly, with letters sent to senior ministers, former prime minister Gordon Brown and even the Queen, calling for more action.
For more on the real-world X-Files, see Sky News.