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By Malcolm Robinson


THAT IT MAY BE A HOAX !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Readers of our SPI web site and also readers of UFO magazines will no doubt have been aware of a major UFO incident which occurred in Scotland back in September 23rd 1996 This incident has been referred to by SPI as the 'Fife Incident', and contains accounts not only of large black triangular craft being seen by the four witnesses, but also many small grey 'creatures' as well. Undoubtedly this case stood head and shoulders above the many other UFO cases that had been reported in Scotland throughout the years, and as such, was probably Scotland's biggest UFO case ever, (surpassing even the famous Robert Taylor Incident in Dechmont Woods near Livingston West Lothian back in 1979).

Before I begin to discuss my strong reservations about the ‘Fife Incident’ not being genuine, I would like to quickly go over the case itself, pointing out what exactly happened that eventful night back in September 1996.

The Fife Incident Case Events. (Condensed).


On the evening of the 23rd of September 1996, Mary Morrison (pseudonym), accompanied by her ten year old son Peter (pseudonym), and her friend Jane (pseudonym) left their home somewhere in Fife, Central Scotland to go to a local shop On the way there, they were startled to see a large black triangular object stop in front of their car and proceed to shine down 3 brightly illuminating beams of light onto the road surface. After a few moments the object departed leaving them quite frightened and bemused by what they had seen. Incredibly, they saw the same or similar object again on the way back from the shop. Arriving home, Jane informed her daughter about what they had seen, but the daughter (aged 15) refused to believe what her mother was telling her and challenged her with "O.K. let's go out and look for this thing!" All four then went back out in the direction of where they had seen this object and were startled to spot, rising up from a range of trees, some incredibly bright lights similar to a laser light show. These lights were shining up from the bottom of the trees. Not only that, but there were many of what appeared to be star-like objects hanging low in the sky At this point, things began to get really strange, for in front of this range of trees appeared a mist within which were visible 'hundreds' (Witness is on audio tape stating this fact, M.R.) of small grey 'beings' running around the woods, lifting and carrying what appeared to be boxes or cubes and also cylinders.

Suddenly, parts of this mist which contained some of these 'beings' started to move in the witnesses' direction across a ploughed farmer's field. This was too much, so they all jumped straight back into the car and shot off into the night. Before they did so however, the daughter screamed out that there was a 'creature' standing next to the car 'grinning', and just before the car left the area, a tremendous flash of blue light hit the field behind them, illuminating the dark night. One would think that this would be too much for some people to bear and that they would have stayed put in the safety of their home, but not so, for they felt that even though they were still very much frightened by what they had seen, they just had to find out more, and the only way that they could do so would be to head once more back out into the night, whereby hoping to see further evidence of 'something strange'. This they did, and they claim that they once more witnessed many strange small 'creatures' moving around in the woods.

Other points to come out of our SPI Investigation were as f6llows

1.) Some of them came back from their experience with scars on their bodies.

2.) One witness claims to have observed many more UFOs around her home.

3.) The young boy claimed to have observed a small grey 'creature' floating outside his
    bedroom window He also saw one in his bathroom.

4.) The young boy also claimed that a grey 'creature' followed him to his school and
    helped him with his school work.

(unseen it must be said, by any other of his classmates or his school teacher)

The above, and much more, (far too much to go into here) was related by one of the main witnesses to Malcolm Robinson on audio tape. Prior to SPI becoming involved, Quest International despatched a Scottish researcher who took soil samples and photographs. I wrote this case up for a number of British and overseas UFO magazines, (with the permission of the witnesses ensuring that no real names or locations were given) I also assisted BBC 2 on a documentary about this case, (January 1998). At the time, I was as sure as I can ever be, that Mary Morrison was telling me the truth. One may never know for certain, of course. You can have someone tell you something with confidence and clarity, but they might be lying through their teeth. I did not think that Mary Morrison was lying to me, (or her 10 year old son) so what has happened for me to change my views on this? Firstly though, I'd like to make very clear a few important points regarding this case which some researchers have taken me to task about, so let me make these points clear They are:-

a.) The witnesses have never ever, at any point in time, either spoken to me or written to me, to tell me that they were unhappy by my write-up of their experience. I say again, at no time have they contacted me saying they were displeased by my write-up. The only person to have said to me that the witnesses were displeased was another Scottish researcher by the name of David Colman, who also part-assisted on this case. Why did the witnesses (if they were displeased) not come to me directly and say so ? If you, the reader of this article, were displeased with someone, wouldn't you tell them yourself, rather than get someone many miles from you to do it for you!!!

b.) I guaranteed absolute anonymity to these witnesses, I did not use their real names in my report, and I did not give the true location where it happened either. Someone else gave away this location. I actually lied to many press agencies when they were hounding me to tell them where this happened. I lied and told them that it happened near the small town of Kennoway in Fife, (it happened nowhere near there), such was my desire to keep true to my word and not disclose the true location.

c.) I wrote (enclosing a stamped addressed envelope) to the witnesses asking them if it was true that they were unhappy by the SPI report of their case. They never ever replied. I wrote twice more, no replies either.

d.) SPI were not the only research group to write about this case. David Colman did a write up in his own UFO magazine. Ron Halliday has written about this case in his excellent book 'UFOs--The Scottish Dimension' (Scottish Paranormal Press, 4 Linden Avenue, Stirling, Scotland FK7 7PG, price 9:95). My only gripe about it was Ron never mentioning the fact that SPI had researched this case, so therefore the reader is left thinking that Ron did an excellent job on this case when in point of fact, he never researched it, he only commented on it. The Fife case has also been commented on and written about by many other UFOlogists. Why were they not being told off by the witnesses???

e.) According to David Colman, I was asked by the witnesses not to talk about this case to a BUF0RA international UFO Congress in Sheffield last year. Why did the witnesses not tell me this direct, why go through Colman, something didn't seem right. I wrote to the witnesses asking them if this was correct, they never replied. Because of my acceptance of the BUF0RA Code of Practice as far as witnesses go, I did not speak about this case in Sheffield even although it was now common knowledge and had been the subject of many a newspaper and radio piece. 'strange' !!!!!

f.) My report on the 'Fife Incident' is 100% true, why? Because it is word for word taken from the audio taped account that witness Mary Morrison gave me. Everything in my report was taken from that audio tape. And because I know this to be true, I am prepared to give 1,000 to any person who says otherwise and can show me, without any problem, that there is in that report any false recounting of the witness testimony.

g.) An exhaustive Investigation was undertaken by SPI to try and find a rational solution to this case. Checks with Airports, the police, the Met Office, the M.o.D. and various other agencies were taken, none of which shed any real light to explain this case. (Letters on file and available to serious researchers)

There are further points to which I could relate, suffice it to say, that the above are the most relevant ones, and ones which do require to be addressed in the sceptical climate that has been spoken about them. I shall now look at the reasons why my views have changed on this once impressive case, a case which I so vigorously stood by. They are as follows


a.) Mary Morrison was a subscriber to a number of UFO publications prior to her UFO sighting, (including F.S.R. Flying Saucer Review, and also Alien Encounters.) So therefore Mary was 'clued up' on the whole UFO issue and knew exactly what UFOs and their respective 'creatures' looked like.

b.) The witness, on her own admission, bought a copy of a UFO magazine whilst on her trip out to buy the jar of coffee. This in itself does not prove anything, but is interesting to note.

c.) Is it within the bounds of credibility, that ‘perhaps’ (please note that I state perhaps) her sighting did not occur and she concocted it with the others to test the gullibility of UFO researchers or just to see how far the story would go. Admittedly, she didn't seek publicity and one knows that there can be many reasons why people tell lies or spread ‘disinformation’. Again admittedly, we'll never know for sure if indeed this was the case here.

But could this whole case just be a UFO Cottingly Fairy story that went too far, hence their reluctance to speak any further about it? And do remember that I have written several times to these witnesses, not only asking them for more information, but also asking them if they were, or were not, happy with the SPI case report. We know that no replies were ever forthcoming. They might not have known the full extent of how big the UFO issue really is in this country, and their make-believe story, (if that is what it truly was) reached uncontrollable proportions and swelled across the globe (which it did). Better to say nothing perhaps lest they have to come clean!!!

I have now some very strong reservations about this case. I accept the fact that some witnesses do see things and refuse to discuss it any further with researchers, but something doesn't quite sit right with me on this one. At the moment, I feel that I may never speak publicly about this case again, this after all the time, expense, and effort that I and others in SPI have put into it. Robert Moore Editor of the BUFORA BULLETIN, was going to do a major write-up of this case in an upcoming issue, but had to drop this due to another contributing writer, (Kevin McClure) stating that he could not get in touch with the witnesses to find out if their testimony were true, and as such, felt that a major piece on this case could not be written without input of some description from the witnesses.

At the end of the day, I accept that witnesses come first, hence I never gave their true names away or the true location of the incident, (which is now well known). But even so, a letter from one of the witnesses would have cleared up many issues relating to what was right or wrong. The silence was deafening and somewhat surprising.

The ‘Fife Incident’ then, is one of the most perplexing cases that I have ever worked on and I would dearly have loved to have found out more, but sadly I never got the chance to do so. Until such times as the witnesses decide to come forward and give more information, (I can assure them I will not divulge their true identities or home address), then we have to say that this case is suspicious. I've had these feelings for some time now but never written them down, and it was only the recent E-mail from Robert Moore which jolted me into action and writing on how I now felt. I don't think that I am wrong to harbour these suspicions, an honest researcher must state how they feel, even if others may now come down on my back. Another point which must be stated here, is the fact that SPI uncovered a number of other independent UFO cases in and around this same area before, during, and after the initial 'Fife Incident', a fact easily confirmed by another fellow Scottish researcher, Sharon Coul, so one should bear this in mind!

UFO sightings may be about witnesses, we record what they tell us as we haven't a UFO to study The study of the witness is equally important and I suggest that fellow researchers use in their investigations, the Anamnesis Form, devised in 1980 by the late Ken Phillips (Contact Malcolm Robinson to obtain one of these forms, 60 pence to cover photo-copying, envelope and stamp, address below) This form looks more at the witness than at what they in point of fact saw. It is a careful evaluation of the witness asking over 60 questions relating to not only their beliefs, but to other aspects of their life as well. This form was also devised by Dr Alexander Keul of Salzburg University. People exaggerate, people sometimes elaborate and put arms and legs on stories to spice them up and look more enticing, but was this the case here? I guess we'll never ’reallyknow, all I can say with any certainty, is that for the first time in any UFO case I have my doubts about a case being genuine.


Malcolm Robinson, March 1997       SPI/BUFORA/MUFON.

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