I grew up in Macclesfield during the 1950’s and 60’s. Born in January 1952, mine was a normal happy childhood and my pals and I did all the normal things kids did in those days. Football, cycling, swimming, making dens, exploring nature, train spotting, steam engines, etc. My parents bought me the “EAGLE” comic with Dan Dare stories and some other pals had Superman , Batman, and Fantastic Four comics which we shared. We knew hardly anything about ETs and UFOs, but every now and again, one of our friends would relate with some excitement that a UFO had been seen around Macclesfield. Most parents agreed that it was all nonsense, so we didn’t really take that much notice, but I do remember some pals saying they’d seen something oval shaped hovering over the Hovis mill, while others said there’d been something that looked like a bus which had landed near the council tip in Bollington. In the mid 60’s I remember an article in the Macc Times which told of how a couple of men doing night fishing on Rudyard Lake had dived into the bushes to hide from balls of light which flew across the lake towards them. I also remember seeing an interview on the TV with a lady who described a UFO hovering above the farm house in which she and her family lived. Her name was Mrs Rustenberg and I never forgot her because I was convinced that she was telling the truth. Thankfully, that interview still exists on Youtube, and I’m happy to give the link pride of place in the section entitled, “SUGGESTED LINKS”. Then there was Star Trek with Captain James T. Kirk and Mr Spock. I was an avid watcher of the series which was so different to anything that had gone before. Around 1968, I came across a paperback copy of “Chariots of the Gods” by Erich von Daniken and this really made me think deeply about extra terrestrial visitations. Today this book is “old hat” as there have been so many others printed since then, but in those days these were ground breaking ideas which left a deep impression on many people.
Next came “courting”, marriage and children, and working our socks off just to keep our heads above water. I always worked six and quite often seven days a week. There simply was no time for anything to do with ETs or UFOs. There’d be an occasional mention of someone seeing something in the Macc Times or daily paper, but I didn’t have time to take much notice, that is until the evening of 28th of December 1980 when we had a close encounter with a UFO on the Leek Road out of Macclesfield which changed my life. At this time, I was part owner of a used car business, but shortly after I started the first car valeting business in Macclesfield. Paul Bianchi of Arighi Bianchi was one of my customers, and it was he who suggested that I might turn my hand to carpet and upholstery cleaning, and so for many years “Robert Hulse Valeting Services” was recommended by Arighi Bianchi to all their customers. The reason I mention this is because my work now involved meeting many people in Macclesfield and surrounding districts. I would often be in their homes cleaning for most of the day, and this gave me the opportunity to tell them about my Leek Road sighting. A few were not interested at all, and I soon became adept at recognising the glazed look on their eyes. However, many more than you might think were extremely interested, and a few of them told me about their own encounters. This was like gold dust to me. Others had actually seen these things, and so I wasn’t “crackers” after all. Some people were so pleased that I’d been brave enough to tell of my encounter, for it gave them the opportunity to get the sighting off their chest at last. Often I’d find that I was the only person they’d ever told, so strong was their fear of being ridiculed by friends and family alike. I decided to write down their encounters and in this section I offer them to you in the hope that it may trigger memories of your own.
I feel it is important to mention here that whereas U.F.O.s and associated phenomena can occur in any location, there are very definite hotspots of activity. The Leek to Macclesfield road is one of them. My friend Doug Pickford once told me that during the time when he was editor of The Macclesfield Express, he was aware of around 35 U.F.O. sightings reported to the newspaper, and because of company policy, most of these reports were not published.
Another hotspot is around council refuse tips. Having studied this subject for many years, I can confidently state that the reason for this is that the visitors are monitoring pollution levels in our environment.