Spectrum 011. UFO '72
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Spectrum was a long-running weekly radio documentary series which captured the essence of New Zealand from 1972 to 2016. Alwyn Owen and Jack Perkins produced the series for many years, creating a valuable library of New Zealand oral history.
In this episode, Jack Perkins attends a UFO conference in Tauranga and visits some mysterious markings on the Hauraki Plains.
With 600 other attendees at the conference Jack explores various opinions, explanations and theories regarding UFO's, the alien universe and sceptics.
Opinions [expressed by unidentified conference-goers] include that earth is ruled by beings from outer space; that spacemen are actually earthmen travelling from a different time; a 'quasi-religious' explanation that suggests 'angels' and other religious scenarios seen throughout history are in fact space travellers and their work
A recording of a speaker addressing the conference. An unidentified speaker notes that space people choose not to dabble in earthly affairs but prefer earthlings to control their own destiny; there is a Government and 'big business' conspiracy to keep information regarding UFO's secret, lest the whole worldwide economic system collapses due to UFO propulsion methods negating traditional combustion engines.
A UFO sceptic Brian Dickerson is interviewed about his map of UFO sightings in New Zealand which suggests television news times [9pm and 11pm] are related to UFO sightings.
He notes southern hemisphere sightings are disproportionately higher than northern hemisphere sightings possibly due to fewer radar systems than in the northern hemisphere.
Some explanations are given for some UFO sightings by radar operator John Cordy and television personality Peter Read: the planet Venus, the star Sirius, reflections, refractions of atmosphere etc.
Peter Read gives give some suggestions on trying to estimate the position, altitude and speed of an objected when sighted.
Discussion at the conference about a mysterious hole, 15 ' deep and 9" in diameter, that appeared overnight on Malcolm Shield's Otorohonga dairy farm, the same night a UFO was reported in nearby Te Kuiti.
Jack interviews Mr Shield, and his sharemilker Gerbac Singh. Engineers and scientists are unable to offer any explanations for the mysterious hole.
Tests done at the University of Canterbury suggesting temperatures of 400- 800 deg C at the bottom of the hole were later discredited by a leading soil scientist. However no rational explanation for the hole and its appearance could be offered.
Reference number 31831
Media type AUDIO
Collection Sound Collection
Perkins, Jack (b.1940), Producer
Read, Peter, 1923-1981 (b.1923, d.1981)