WILLOW GROVE SIGHTING 15/2/63
Tape-recorded interview with Mr. Charles
Brew by Mr. Charles Norris,
President, Victorian Flying Saucer Research
time did you make the sighting, Mr. Brew?
would be about 10 past 7, it was. Yes, 10 past 7, definitely.
Q. What were you doing at the time?
A. We were milking and halfway—approximately
halfway—through, I'd say.
Q. Yes. How did you first notice the
object come down?
A. Well, I was lookin' out over the cows
as I referred to you a while ago and it
came down steeply out of
the east. Oh, I'd say at about 45 degrees.
Q. And what did the object look like
when you first saw it? What were your
A. Well, I thought it was a
helicopter, at first.
Q. What made you think that?
A. On account of it being round and
I've naturally never, ever seen one of these
turnouts before. That
would be asking too much!
Q. Yes, and what did you see when the
object came fairly close to you?
A. Oh well, I noticed first of all
the coloring and after that, the top 2/3 when it
came down and
hovered, was stationary, and the lower section was turning in
anti-clockwise direction--noticed that—and also, as I pointed out, those
protrusions around the side which I think was making the noise--
noise, that is.
Q. And at this stage, how far was the
object from you?
A. Oh, I'd say 75 feet away--perhaps
a little further-- and about the same
distance up in
Q. How did you calculate the height
of the object?
A. Well, I calculated the height by
those trees. I'd say they were
75 feet high. It might have been a shade higher than
those, of course.
Q. Yes, that would be quite right I
would say. Now once again, getting back to
appearance of the object, can you describe the top part of the
A. Well, the top, the very top
section, the dome section, that is, was sort of what
we would call
or glass material or whatever you like, but whatever that
was, I couldn't
say. The middle section, that is the middle section between the
Perspex and the
part that was rotating, was sort of battleship grey and looked
to me like some
bit of metallic material. I couldn't
say for sure, of course, and
the bottom, as I
said, was rotating on an anti-clockwise direction. Well, I
what sort of material it was definitely made of but the Air Force
chaps asked me
that too. As near as I could say, it
seemed something [like]
material as [used in] motorcars. Just by
lookin' at it, you know.
Q. What was the size of the object?
A. Well, I’d say, as near as I could
judge, about 25 feet across—perhaps a little
more — if
anything a little more.
Q. Well, what about the height?
A. Oh, I'd say, overall, about 9 feet,
as near as I could judge. Might have been a
bit more, but of
course it's hard to judge when you only see a thing for a few
seconds, but I'd
say 9 or 10 feet.
Q. You didn’t actually see anybody in
it through what appeared to be the glass
portion on the
top, on the dome?
A. No, on a clear day you may have
but, as I said, it was raining
heavy and no, I
say I did see anybody although I was lookin’ hard enough.
Q. Looking at the object from the
underneath part, what could you see there?
A. Well, when it was hovering, I
could see those scoop-like protrusions, or
were, which seemed to be making the swishing noise. After
that, when it
took off, it was the bluish or sort of pale bluish color underneath.
That’s as near
as I can tell you, as much as I can tell you really, about the
Q. And when it took off, what did you
notice? Well, first of all, of course it did
hover, did it, for
some little time?
A. Well, I'd say for [a] space of 4 or 5 seconds, which is not long, I
Q. Yes, and then after that it took
off, did it, and if so, at what speed would you
A. Oh well, we reckon, Trevor and I
reckon, a jet would probably have to add up
speed to match
Q. And it took off instantly?
A. Yes, flying from a flying start—
you know, not a flying start but a standing
start — and very
fast and very steep.
Q. It went straight up, did it?
A. I’ll say it came in and went out at
about the same angle of 45 degrees, as near
as I could judge.
Q. Getting back to the appearance of
the object, I think you said you noticed
something on top
of the dome?
A. Yes, it seemed to be an aerial
sort of a thing — I'd say about 5 or 6 feet long,
and it did seem
to be either chrome or some lightish metal thing. Whether it
was the aerial or not, I couldn’t say. I was speaking to the
other chap and he
said it was.
Q. I know there were some cows and
other stock in the yard at the time of the
A. Yes, we had half done. We were
halfway, half of them were milked out and
the other half
still had to go through.
Q. What was their reaction to the
A. Well, as I said to your other chap
who was here, they done everything bar
somersaults. They put in the paper 2
that they did turn somersaults but
it a bit far! They certainly played up. I’ve never seen cows play
up like that
before and they never take notice (quite happy before) of an
ordinary jet. A
jet can go over and they just take no notice at all, but they
really played up
Q. Did you have anybody helping you
milk the cows?
A. Yes, we had Trevor there and as I
said, unfortunately he never seen it but he
did hear it and
he said: 'What was that?’ and I said: 'A flying saucer,’ and he
said: 'Don't be [a] so and so,
silly, you know those things don't exist' or
that effect and I said: 'Well, this was a flying saucer, definitely.’
He said: 'Well, it
certainly moved off the mark; it travelled twice as fast as a
jet.’ I said:
'Well, it certainly went away fast, just like somebody had it on a
or something, really went off with a bang.'
Q. So he didn’t hear it until it
actually moved away and then of course, it was too
A. No, he didn't see it,
unfortunately, but he certainly heard it go.
Q. Have you been interviewed by any
representatives of the government?
A. Yes, as I said, the C.S.I.R.O.3 were here and number 1 question as
far as they
concerned—he asked me did I get a headache. I said: Well, it's strange
that you should
ask me that because I thought it was too ridiculous, I would
mentioned it. But I did get an awful headache just behind the
eyes. I never
suffer with headaches normally and I took a Bex and I went in,
but it didn't
seem to have any effect. It just wore off itself towards night—took
all day long to
Q. When did you first get the
A. Oh, when I was sort of gazing at
the Perspex canopy business I noticed it.
Q. It came on immediately, did it?
A. Yes, more or less. Yes. Yes.
Q. What did the C.S.I.R.O. man say?
Incidentally, do you know his name? What's
A. Er, Mr. Berson 4. Yes, Mr. Berson was his name.
Q. And what did he say about the
A. 'Well,' he said, 'that ties in
with what our theory [is?]; we always had
it was...’ (what would you say?). He gave me the impression it
or something to that effect—that's beyond me—but he
said that would
more than likely cause a headache and it certainly took all day
to get rid of it,
anyhow. I know that.
Q. What else did the C.S.I.R.O. do?
A. Well, as I said, he took away
samples of rock—they were very interested in
said being a sort of an ironstone, it may have some
it. And there is the reef
as I said and winds right through here
and it came over that reef,
more or less parallel with it.
Q. How long after the sighting
occurred did the C.S.I.R.0. come down here?
A. They were here about four days
after and the Air Force about a week, or near
the best part of
a week after that.
Q. Oh, the Air Force came down as
well, did they? Who came down from the Air
A. Well, Mr. Murdoch was one of them,
the only name I can recall.
Q. Was he in uniform?
A. Yes, they were all in uniform.
Q. They were officers, were they?
A. Yes, I would say high officers,
high-ranking officers, anyhow.
Q. What did they do?
A. Well, they photographed the
surrounding country, that was the Baw Baws5,
Long distance cameras and took light, clouds and cloud plus,
you know, how
much blue was showing in the sky—all that sort of thing. It's a
bit beyond me,
some of the things they done but, all those things.
Q. Did they have instruments?
A. Yes, they had the cameras and they
lay tapping the rocks and took particular
notice of the
rock formation also. Don't know for what reason but they did.
Yes, they said
that after I drew them the sketch, that it was similar to other
what had been seen in other countries. It tallied almost exactly
with what's been
seen over there, but they didn't think it was quite so big as
that. Yes, they
said it was, approximately, to the best of their knowledge, the
lowest it had
been and the best sighting.
Q. That was in Australia, was it?
A. Yes, from what I could gather, here.
Q. Did anyone else come down from the
A. Yes, I had the aeronautical expert
from, I think [the] liaison officer, I
that was the
Sale Air Base. He asked similar questions and he wanted to know
if there was any
engine noise, but we never heard any engine noise, not as we
Q. To go back to the object itself,
did you notice any light coming from the object
itself at any
A. No. There was no light in the dome
business and no lights underneath.
Witness’s original sketch, reannotated by me (CF) for clarity
reference: Transcription of tape-recorded interview with Mr. Charles Brew by
Mr. Charles Norris, President, Victorian Flying Saucer Research Society.
With thanks to The J. Allen
Hynek Center for UFO Studies (CUFOS): http://www.cufos.org/
Note #1: Perspex, similar to
Plexiglas, is a brand name for a hard, transparent plastic or acrylic resin.
- H J-
Note #2: The newspaper
mentioned is the Manawatu Standard
of Saturday, February 16, 1963, which states: “The cows turned somersaults
and the horses reared in panic.”
Note #3: C.S.I.R.O. =
Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, from a letter
by the Division of Meteorological Physics to the Victorian Flying Saucer
Note #4: F. A. Berson, from a
letter sent to Victorian Flying Saucer Research Society by C.S.I.R.O.,
Division of Meteorological Physics.
Note #5: BAW BAW PLATEAU:
The Baw Baw Mountains situated in Upper Gippsland are an outstanding
granitic plateau over 5000 feet in height visible from all places in that
part of Victoria.
The Baw Baws are a block of hard granite, with eight peaks rising more
than 100 metres above the plateau.
Baw Baw is an aboriginal word meaning
UFOCAT PRN - 89815
UFOCAT URN – 074519 UFO Nachtrichten, July 1963
UFOCAT URN – 089770 APRO Bulletin, July
1963, p. 1
UFOCAT URN – 152177 APRO Bulletin, September
1963, p. 1
UFOCAT URN – 089815 APRO Bulletin, September
1963, p. 1
UFOCAT URN – 089816 APRO Bulletin, September
1963, p. 4
UFOCAT URN – 102370 Orbit (Tyneside), 1963,
UFOCAT URN – 036306 The UFO Evidence 1,
Richard Hall, p. 140, © 1964
UFOCAT URN – 101583 Flying Saucer Magazine (Palmer), June 1964, p. 56
UFOCAT URN – 091860 Flying Saucers over
Australia by James Holledge, p. 86, © 1965
UFOCAT URN – 106941 Flying Saucer Magazine
(Palmer), January 1966, p. 53
UFOCAT URN – 036307 The
Reference for Outstanding UFO Sighting Reports by Thomas Olsen,
#140, © UFOIRC 1966
UFOCAT URN – 090563 Strange Effects from
UFOs by Gordon I. R. Lore, p. 68, © 1969
UFOCAT URN – 069246 UFOs: The Whole Story by
Coral Lorenzen, p. 238, © 1969
UFOCAT URN – 036305 A Century of Landings
(N=923) by J. Vallee, # 563, © 1969
UFOCAT URN – 090525 Strange Effects from
UFOs by Gordon I. R. Lore, p. 44, © 1969
UFOCAT URN – 036304 Data-Net Report, May
UFOCAT URN – 071259 Flying Saucer Review,
September 1970, p. 29
UFOCAT URN – 069401 UFOs over the Southern
Hemisphere by Michael Hervey, p. 096, © 1975
UFOCAT URN – 119527 UFOs over the Southern
Hemisphere by Michael Hervey, p. 117, © 1975
UFOCAT URN – 126448 UFO Research Australia
Newsletter, March 1982, p. 24
UFOCAT URN – 113907 Keith Basterfield
UFOCAT URN – 036309 Project Grudge/Blue Book Special Reports 1-12
UFOCAT URN – 061743 J. Allen Hynek investigation
UFOCAT URN – 036308 James E. McDonald
investigation files, #083
UFOCAT URN – 036303 Condon Committee
investigation files, # 353
UFOCAT URN – 065076 Computer Catalog of Type
9 Cases (N=150) by Brad Sparks, # 075,
UFOCAT URN – 169839 *U* UFO Computer Database by Larry Hatch, # 06299,
Mt. Macdonald Latitude 37-17 S, Longitude 146-27 E (D-M)
Willow Grove Latitude
38-04 S, Longitude 146-10 E
37-49 S, Longitude 144-58 E (From newspaper2 article)
38-11 S, Longitude 146-15 E (From newspaper2 article)
La Trobe River Latitude 38-09 S, Longitude 146-34 E (From sketch by witness)
UFO Location (UFOCAT)Latitude 38.18 S, Longitude
146.30 E (D.%) [Moe]
Latitude 37.75 S, Longitude 144.97 E
Latitude 38.08 S, Longitude 146.32 E [Willow