It is true, as you note (10 December), that Sir Patrick Moore wrote dozens of books on astronomy, but it’s not generally known that he is suspected of having written a book alleging an encounter near Lossiemouth with a visitor from Mars.
The book was Flying Saucer From Mars, published by Muller in 1954, and attributed to one “Cedric Allingham”, an author no one could trace.
Twenty-six years ago Christopher Allan and I laid out the evidence that Moore was responsible (“Flying Saucer From Moore’s”, in Magonia, July 1986).
He was known to be a practical joker. He had admitted that he once sent a hoax UFO sighting to his local paper to test public reaction.
He put spoof letters in the Aetherius Society newsletter, Cosmic Voice, in 1957.
He invented an Australian rocket expert (Dr Robert Randall) at the time of an alleged UFO landing in Wiltshire in July 1963, and was responsible for an April Fool’s Day joke on TV to do with gravity and planetary alignments. Patrick Moore never admitted this hoax, but nor did he ever deny it.