Case File: United Kingdom Crop Circles
Location: Numerous locations through Southern England
Date: June 15, 1988
Description: Scattered over bumous sites across the country, hundreds of crop circles in strange, complex shapes have been found throughout southern Englan since the 1970s. Some people believe they are connected to sightings of strange lights or UFOs that are seen the night before the circles are discovered.
CaseEditHistory: Crop circles are a recent new phenomenon that has been occuring within the last thirty to forty years. Nearly 95% of the circles in England are located near the mysterious landmark known as Stonehenge, and near other rock monuments. Charity Down is a farm located several miles away from London. On June 15, 1988, farmer Chris Woods drove a tractor through one of the wheatfields when he saw a giant circle that had appeared in the field, and nobody can explain how it got there. Since the late 1970s, hundreds of circles similar to that one have been found in fields throughout southern England, some as large as 100 yards, apparently forming over night in fields of wheat, rice, and corn. The circles are never cut, but pressed down in a swirling pattern both clockwise and counterclockwise, but the crop is not damaged and is harvested normally. There is never any footprints or tire tracks found near the circles, and some appear in twos, threes, or even in fours or fives that make complex geometric shapes. Some have satellites, or smaller crop circles around them, while some have rings around them, and some, amazingly, have both satellites and rings. Several researchers, including Pat Delgado, Colin Andrews, and Archibald Roy have studied the crop circles, and do not believe that they are hoaxes, and some claim, due to the detail that have been put into the circles, and the large amount of circles. As part of a televised experiment, British military personnal tried to create a crop circles with several mechanical tools. Researchers determined that the difference between the "hoax" circles and the "real" circles is what is happening to the plants. The roots in the real circles are softened, bended, and hardened. If the circles are not a hoax, then what are truly creating them? Several theories have been brought up and discarded.
Infared technology showed that there was no evidence of sinkholes, or anything similar that could have caused it, and although some believe that whirlwinds are the cause of the circles, other scientists and farmers believe that whirlwinds could not do that. Regardless, the crop circles appear to form over night and are believed to be related to lights that are seen during the night near where the circles are found. One sighting occurred on July 6, 1985, while Pat and Jack Colins were driving in farmland near Stonehenge. They saw a circle with lights all around it in the sky and they believe that it may have been a UFO. That same night, according to Colin Andrews, two circles were found the next day that was in a direct alignment with the UFO. In the summer of 1988, a British scientist team began a surveillance operation to watch to see if a crop circle is made. The operation went of eight days and nights, but none of it formed. Interestingly, no circles appeared throughout most of Southern England, and that whatever did create the circles apparently knew about the watch, bringing the possibility that intelligent life might exist outside of Earth. Even though they didn't find any circles, they did find that there was an energy field in one of the circles, which many scientist believe are very significent. Nobody has any idea who made the circles, and why they were made.
Investigations: Richard G. Andrew has investigated the England crop circles. Pat Delgado and Colin Andrews have spent over a decade studying the crop circle phenomenon, and have even written a book about. Originally they received reports of one or two in the late 70s, ten to twenty in the early 80s, and in 1988, 98 circles formed in five months. Then, in 1989, there has been over 200 circles in just a few months, according to Delgado and Andrews. They don't believe that the crop circles could be weather-related. Some researchers believe that the England crop circles are a hoax. Glasgow University professor Archibald Roy has studied the circles since 1980, and he has found that no theories that have been presented to completely explain what causes them. Some theories he have found include: circles formed by hundreds of hedgehogs, imprints of UFOs, caused by helicopters, whirlwinds, and hoaxes by humans. However, Archibald does not believe that they were hoaxes because of the large amount of the circles that have been discovered.
Extra Notes: The case was featured as a part of the January 31, 1990 episode. An update to this segment aired on September 12, 1990.
Results: Unresolved. Since the story aired, 500 more crop circles were discovered in England, and several other countries, including the United States. Several new and more complex designs were found, including one that had rectangles through the center. In June, three pictograms were made making it the largest crop circle formation in the world. Colin Andrews believes that because the circle was so large, it seems that it would be impossible for it to be man-made. Then another experiment was done to try to capture a circle on film. For three weeks, scientists and other experts monitored one of the most active crop circle areas. Amazingly, four circles formed there, and even though two were dismissed as hoaxes, the other two appear to be genuine. Botanists recently compared the samples of the plant inside the circle to the ones outside of the circle, and surprisingly, they were much different in patterns. Some believe that the causes of the circle formations are supernatural, mainly because the structure of plants cannot change because of human or natural reasons. Most amazing to many is the circles that are forming throughout other countries. Then, in 1991, two men, Doug Bower and Dave Chorley, came forward claiming that they were responsible for several crop circles that occurred in 1978 in England. Several other crop circles in England have also been proven to be hoaxes, but many of the crop circles in England and in other countries still cannot be explained.