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Letter dated 24 September 2002 to David Clarke from:

Peter Hudson, Assistant Secretary at S6 (Air), Air Ministry, 1956-57, Head of Air Staff Secretariat, 1958-61, Under Secretary of State, Cabinet Office 1969-72, Assistant Under Secretary of State (MOD), 1975-76.

"Thank you for your letter.

"I am afraid I shall not be able to offer you any startling insights. It was D.D.I. (Tech) who examined UFO reports, but I have no recollection of the incident in question [Lakenheath-Bentwaters].

"UFOs were not very high on the S6 agenda in 1956-57, which I remember as being mainly concerned with the aftermath of the Suez debacle, which included among other things the assassination of the Iraqi Prime Minister, and our enforced withdrawal, the various Cold War crises, and our aircraft problems (particularly the Javelin, an aircraft which I see is mentioned in one of the press cuttings you sent me).

"This said I do clearly remember that most of us in S6 were pretty sceptical at that time. It was thought significant that the 'sightings' nearly always referred to a circular or spherical object, a shape always liable to be produced by an atmospheric distortion of one sort or another. I remember that one of my last contributions to the subject - I was moved to another desk at the end of 1957 - was a Parliamentary answer in which, after explaining away a number of 'sightings', I added something on the lines that: '...that the remainder cannot be explained is almost certainly attributable to nothing more sinister than lack of data.' That remains my view. Needless to say, I am rather relieved not to have been proved wrong in the intervening years!"