FEARS that little green men have been hovering above Swindon have been dispelled by a 14-year-old girl.

As reported by the Adver, a number of sightings have been made of bright orange objects moving through the evening sky over the last month.

But the riddle appears to have been solved after a teenager and her mum from Cirencester say it was they who let off the colourful entertainment during a party.

Abbie-Lea Drew and her mum Susan were staying at Greenacres Farm, Leigh, near Ashton Keynes, at the time of the previously unexplained discovery.

“Those aren’t UFOs,” said Abbie-Lea.

“I celebrated my birthday in December and had a party over two nights.

“On both evenings we released some glow lanterns. They are very big and colourful and go very high.

“My family think that it’s hysterical and unfortunately it wasn’t UFOs.”

Wiltshire Police and the Ministry of Defence both said they had no record of any UFO sightings in recent weeks.

Chris Williams, the lead investigator at Swindon UFO Research, says he looked into 43 possible UFO sightings in the town last year but all could be accounted for.

“In about 98 per cent of cases these moving objects can be explained,” he said.

“This latest case appears to be lanterns. I think the person mentioned them lining in formation – that would mean they are flying at the same atmospheric conditions.”

“I would encourage people who witness any further sightings to contact us and we can look into it. I hope 2009 will give us some more UFO sightings.”

However, one sighting on New Year’s Eve still has yet to be explained. Jessie Morrissey, 28, her partner Brian Bradford and Jessie’s grandmother Joan saw orange flashes in Siddington near Cirencester.

“It was like something I’d never seen before,” said Jessie, from West Swindon. “It was two orange lights, then three and finally just one.

“I know people will probably say we’re on the whiskey, but we all know what we saw.”

Another resident saw a bright flashing light over Wootton Bassett Road at about 6.15pm on Monday.

* If you have seen strange objects in the sky, or have video footage of UFOs over Swindon, email it to webteam@swindonadvertiser.co.uk or send it from your mobile to 80360, starting your message with 'Swindon News'.