mysterious fireballs were seen over the Malvern Hills 50 years ago.

The first was reported in the Gazette on Friday, January 21, 1955.

Mrs Lawson, of Hillus Cottage, Malvern, claimed to have seen a huge ball of fire with a long green tail passing rapidly across the sky towards Bromyard Downs.

She was watching for the return of her husband at 5.10pm the previous Tuesday, when she witnessed the phenomenon about a mile away.

"Had I put a tea plate before my eyes, it would have about covered it," she said.

"'It travelled obliquely and disappeared behind the council bungalows to the north.

"It gave off a brilliant incandescent light and looked rather like a huge ball of burning gas. It had a tail the length of which appeared twice the width of the ball and it gave off a greenish light."

Mrs Lawson said the fireball appeared to have been falling and she expected to hear a bang, or at least a noise of some kind, but she heard nothing.

Her story was confirmed by bus inspector A C Hancock, who thought it was a jet plane on fire crashing to earth.

In the following week's Gazette, Mr E Morley, of Stanley Road, reported seeing the same object from his home and thought it was about half a mile away.

In the February 4 issue, milkman F White, of Lechmere Crescent, saw a similar fireball while delivering milk at 6.30am the previous Monday.

Mr White said it travelled from west to east, appearing over the Malvern Hills and disappearing behind the bus garage in Spring Lane. He described it as "eerie and frightening".