The mystery of the UFO sighting over Coppull earlier this month has been solved - they were Chinese sky lanterns from a nearby birthday party.

Last week the Citizen reported how local man Simon Latham, 40, spotted four silent lights in the sky as he was walking down Park Road in the village.

His mother also witnessed the strange goings on and after the story was printed we received several comments on our website backing up the sighting.

However, Cheryl Finch, 22, also contacted the Citizen to say that she was the unknowing culprit and the UFOs were, in fact, Chinese sky lanterns that were released to coincide with the arrival of her mother, Pat, for the 50th birthday bash, which took place at the Alison Arms in Preston Road.

She said: “It was my mother’s 50th birthday so we wanted to do something special. We had seen the sky lanterns at the Southport Firework Show and were actually warned that some people mistake them for UFOs because of the way they move in the air and the fact they make no noise.

“We were joking that some people may think that ours were UFOs but it was only when we read the Citizen and the website that we realised some people had.”

Cheryl, who works as a support worker at Preston Prison, organised the party with her sister Katie, 17, and brother Mark, 24.

Karl Davies, landlord at the Alison Arms, said: “We all thought it was hilarious when we saw it in the paper but you can see why people thought it might have been a UFO.”