Transcript of letter from Squadron Leader John Brady to Dave Clarke, 1 November 2000
At the time of the 13/14 August 56 event, 23 Squadron were operating from RAF Waterbeach for an exercise and in the early hours of 14 Aug Dave Chambers and I were scrambled in Venom NF3 'E' at 0200 hrs. We were vectored onto a heading which took us towards Lakenheath, and told to climb to 7,000 ft. There was some chat with the Americans and we were given a heading to intercept their contact. If I remember correctly, on the first run I had no contact. However we subsequently turned onto a reciprocal heading and I then obtained a contact which I held 10-15 degrees off dead ahead and noted that it raced down the tube at around 300-350 kts. Two further runs were made with the same result. Dave looked out on each run but could see nothing. My radar contact was firm but messy and I concluded that it was stationary. We continued to fly around looking until returning to base; a flight time of 55 mins.
Ivan and Ian Fraser-Ker were scrambled to continue the search shortly before we landed. I felt at the time that the contact was probably a met balloon or some similar balloon. I do not think any of us had heard about other aspects of the incident until many years later - 40 years or so. Both crews completed post-flight reports and that was that.
A few years ago, Ivan contacted me and mentioned a programme about UFOs being made by BBC2. To cut a long story short, we were interviewed by the BBC at Lakenheath USAF and subsequently appeared in the film. My opinion of the half hour film was that it was terrible - cringe making - but they did get our part right.
As far as the full details of the incident are concerned, I am afraid I am pure sceptic although I did have a contact on my AI 21 that night.