The Mystery of Saffron Walden

A ground-trembling incident has left residents in a market town asking whether a meteorite had landed nearby.

Hundreds of residents in Saffron Walden and surrounding villages reported incidents of houses shaking, windows rattling and furniture moving at about 8pm on Sunday (01/16/2011) when two loud bangs were heard.

Suggestions have been made that it could have been an earthquake, a meteorite or a plane crash – but the mystery still remains unexplained. 

A full-scale operation was launched by the emergency services after residents in Saffron Walden, Thaxted, Ashdon and Newport reported hearing the bang and experiencing a trembling – but nothing was  found.

Residents as far away as Haverhill, Castle Camps and Great Sampford contacted the News, reporting their beds moving, houses shaking and loud thuds. 

Police from Stansted and Dunmow were drafted in to search the area along with firefighters.

Caroline Mifsud, 37, from Saffron Walden, said: “My son heard an explosion and felt a shake and about 10 minutes later there were police and fire engines everywhere. Everyone is talking about it on Facebook.”

Andrew Green, 25, of The Wayback, was in the garden at the time.

He said: “I just felt the ground tremble and there was a bang – it was really weird.”

Freshwell Street resident Jack Mervin, 52, said he felt his windows shake and “the floor shudder”.

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He said: “I thought it was an earthquake.”

Yesterday at Saffron Walden police station, Inspector Kevin Wakefield said: “We had a lot of calls from residents who heard and felt something but no one has actually seen anything.

“At the moment it is currently unexplained and unaccounted for and we are actively encouraging anyone who saw anything that might us help solve the mystery to contact us.”
A spokesman for the British Geological Survey, which records and measures earthquakes in the UK, said it had not recorded an earthquake in the area.

He said: “It could be a meteorite or just an unexplained natural phenomenon.” 

UK Power Networks also said it had no incidents recorded.

Paul Curtis, station officer at Saffron Walden fire station, said: “It’s a bit of a mystery.

“The power companies said there have been no reports of power loss and we investigated and could not find anything.

“We also checked with the military to see if they had conducted any training exercises.”
Article by cambridge-news.co.uk  
Why do people think it was a meteorite? 
The new year begun with meteorite showers that reached a pick of  40 meteors per hour at their peak on 3 and 4 January.
Also, The Blackburn Leisure Astronomy Society, hosted a weekend of public events at its observatory in Brough between 14 and 16 January 2011.
If we add that the Police, Army and BGS reported no events in that area, the mysterious explosions and earth tremble may had been caused by one or more large meteorites falling to the ground.
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