Sussex man hit by meteorite

The Argus: OUT OF THE BLUE: The meteorite pieces OUT OF THE BLUE: The meteorite pieces

Sussex cricket fan Jan Marszal looked up in amazement as he saw a small, dark round object hurtle towards him on the boundary edge.

But it was not one of Luke Wright’s mammoth pulls coming his way – it was a meteorite that had fallen from outer space – and nearly struck him on the head.

It’s thought to be the first extra-terrestrial crash landing in the UK for nearly 20 years.

The 51-year-old had spent Wednesday afternoon in Uxbridge with friend Richard Haynes watching Sussex battle with Middlesex in a county championship division two clash.

The pair – both Sussex members – were sitting square of the wicket watching England’s T20 hero Wright bat with Monty Panesar when they spotted the black, five-inch rock hurtling towards them. Mr Marszal, 51, an IT consultant from Blackboys, near Uckfield, said: “We were sitting at the boundary edge when all of a sudden, out of a blue sky, we saw this small dark object hurtling towards us.

“It landed five yards inside the boundary and split into two pieces.

“One piece bounced up and hit me in the chest and the other ended up against the boundary board.

“It came across at quite a speed – if it had hit me full on it could have been very interesting."

The pair have kept the seemingly extra-terrestrial pieces of rock for posterity and said they would be happy for experts to examine them.

Retired Mr Haynes, 52, from Haywards Heath, said: “We were quietly supping our pints, both looked up at the same time and saw a black object coming towards us – we didn’t know what it was.

“If it had come from the other direction we might have suspected someone had thrown it, but we saw it come in straight over the ground from quite a way out – it was definitely a meteorite.”

Meteorite expert Dr Matthew Genge, 42, of Imperial College, London, said: “If this turns out to be a meteorite it’s very exciting and would be the first fall in the UK since 1992."

Comments (27)

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1:41pm Sat 24 Jul 10

ICantThinkOfAName says...

I was probably thrown by a football hooligan.
I was probably thrown by a football hooligan. ICantThinkOfAName

1:51pm Sat 24 Jul 10

Angryoldman says...

It broke in two and a little green man popped out.
I'll have a pint of whatever they were drinking.
It broke in two and a little green man popped out. I'll have a pint of whatever they were drinking. Angryoldman

1:58pm Sat 24 Jul 10

Tammy Flugh says...

I for one, welcome our new cricket-hating overlords.
I for one, welcome our new cricket-hating overlords. Tammy Flugh

2:01pm Sat 24 Jul 10

greggor says...

He's missing a trick here,why doesn't he sell it?
He's missing a trick here,why doesn't he sell it? greggor

3:37pm Sat 24 Jul 10

Gay Cavalier says...

Thrown by a Football Hooligan no doubt! They really are atrocious thugs!
Thrown by a Football Hooligan no doubt! They really are atrocious thugs! Gay Cavalier

5:29pm Sat 24 Jul 10

The Good Driver says...

That's a pretty bold statement by Dr Genge. How does he know no meteorites have fallen in the UK since 1992?
.
There could have been a load of them falling in remote areas or into lakes without anybody knowing of the event.
That's a pretty bold statement by Dr Genge. How does he know no meteorites have fallen in the UK since 1992? . There could have been a load of them falling in remote areas or into lakes without anybody knowing of the event. The Good Driver

6:13pm Sat 24 Jul 10

John Steed says...

pity it didnt fall outside the boundary and give sussex a tad of inspiration
pity it didnt fall outside the boundary and give sussex a tad of inspiration John Steed

7:00pm Sat 24 Jul 10

timfusciardi says...

“If it had come from the other direction we might have suspected someone had thrown it, but we saw it come in straight over the ground from quite a way out – it was definitely a meteorite"

How can they "definitely" know it was a meteorite? They say they are happy for an expert to examine it, but why bother, they are sure its a metorite.

I got hit on the head the other day from a white substance, i looked up. No seagul over head. Could this too be something to do with space???

Sorry bad day, felt i would take it out on this website....
“If it had come from the other direction we might have suspected someone had thrown it, but we saw it come in straight over the ground from quite a way out – it was definitely a meteorite" How can they "definitely" know it was a meteorite? They say they are happy for an expert to examine it, but why bother, they are sure its a metorite. I got hit on the head the other day from a white substance, i looked up. No seagul over head. Could this too be something to do with space??? Sorry bad day, felt i would take it out on this website.... timfusciardi

7:11pm Sat 24 Jul 10

kayotic says...

Uxbridge is very close to Heathrow Airport. Could have been a piece of metal off of one of the many airliners round there.
Uxbridge is very close to Heathrow Airport. Could have been a piece of metal off of one of the many airliners round there. kayotic

10:23pm Sat 24 Jul 10

EroThraX says...

=| Micrometeorites are hitting the UK pretty much non-stop, so I would imagine small meteorites of this size are pretty common as well, it's just unlikely that people see them impact usually.
=| Micrometeorites are hitting the UK pretty much non-stop, so I would imagine small meteorites of this size are pretty common as well, it's just unlikely that people see them impact usually. EroThraX

2:17am Sun 25 Jul 10

daveharris says...

Hi,

I am secretary of the British and Irish Meteorite society (www.bimsociety.org) . I would really appreciate if i could have a chance to examine this specimen.
Could someone at the argus call me? I believe you have my telephone number. This could be an important event!
thanks
dave
Hi, I am secretary of the British and Irish Meteorite society (www.bimsociety.org) . I would really appreciate if i could have a chance to examine this specimen. Could someone at the argus call me? I believe you have my telephone number. This could be an important event! thanks dave daveharris

2:37pm Mon 26 Jul 10

smegbuster says...

"...and nearly struck him on the head. " ...so, the headline is wrong then?
I was under the impression that even small meteorites would (due to the speed gained in the fall) create a crater rather than just splitting in two. Can anyone enlighten me on the smallest-sized meteorite that would be expected to leave a crater?
Security word (no kidding): hard-item !
"...and nearly struck him on the head. " ...so, the headline is wrong then? I was under the impression that even small meteorites would (due to the speed gained in the fall) create a crater rather than just splitting in two. Can anyone enlighten me on the smallest-sized meteorite that would be expected to leave a crater? Security word (no kidding): hard-item ! smegbuster

2:52pm Mon 26 Jul 10

The Good Driver says...

The headline is not wrong, assuming the facts are correct. A bit misleading maybe, but the meteorite did hit the gentleman, albeit after landing first.
.
It might also be said that being hit in the chest does equate to 'nearly struck on the head'.
'
Having said that, if the hand in the picture is Mr.Marszal's and it is a '5 inch' meteorite, he must be a big bloke. Wonder how the '5 inches' was measured? Whatever was used, I'd like it to give me an official size on bits of my anatomy.
The headline is not wrong, assuming the facts are correct. A bit misleading maybe, but the meteorite did hit the gentleman, albeit after landing first. . It might also be said that being hit in the chest does equate to 'nearly struck on the head'. ' Having said that, if the hand in the picture is Mr.Marszal's and it is a '5 inch' meteorite, he must be a big bloke. Wonder how the '5 inches' was measured? Whatever was used, I'd like it to give me an official size on bits of my anatomy. The Good Driver

3:00pm Mon 26 Jul 10

smegbuster says...

...hmmm... Sorry, it seems I rushed through this story a bit too quickly. I failed to notice the fact that it bounced and hit him, and I had read the size as 5cm rather than inches (perhaps because I saw the picture first). I too can think of a few things I would be happy to measure in centimetres but report in inches!
...hmmm... Sorry, it seems I rushed through this story a bit too quickly. I failed to notice the fact that it bounced and hit him, and I had read the size as 5cm rather than inches (perhaps because I saw the picture first). I too can think of a few things I would be happy to measure in centimetres but report in inches! smegbuster

3:02pm Mon 26 Jul 10

smegbuster says...

...mind you, the reverse would probably apply to my waist size!
...mind you, the reverse would probably apply to my waist size! smegbuster

3:16pm Mon 26 Jul 10

The Good Driver says...

It's not only The Argus, of course. 'Eurosport' is now reporting the incident and apparently the meteorite 'soared' towards the gentlemen. Not quite sure how this thing 'soared' when it had presumably reached it's terminal velocity approaching the Earth.
It's not only The Argus, of course. 'Eurosport' is now reporting the incident and apparently the meteorite 'soared' towards the gentlemen. Not quite sure how this thing 'soared' when it had presumably reached it's terminal velocity approaching the Earth. The Good Driver

4:03pm Mon 26 Jul 10

blueseagull says...

Gay Cavalier wrote:
Thrown by a Football Hooligan no doubt! They really are atrocious thugs!
You obviously hate football and especially the Albion. (given the amount of posts you make having a go at the club or the fans!) Do you actually have a life? (Other than posting on here of course!) If you have that much time on your hands, why not take an English course? You could learn great things like, punctuation, spelling, where to put capital letters, etc, etc! Oh and since when did the atrocious thugs (such as football hooligans) throw meteorites from such a height?! I'd like to know how such an atrocious thug (obviously a Neanderthal man by your books!) could actually throw the thing so high, that it then comes down at such an angle and force that gravity would put on it?! I am deeply interested in your intelligent reply!!! from a rather disgruntled atrocious thug of an Albion fan!!!
[quote][p][bold]Gay Cavalier[/bold] wrote: Thrown by a Football Hooligan no doubt! They really are atrocious thugs![/p][/quote]You obviously hate football and especially the Albion. (given the amount of posts you make having a go at the club or the fans!) Do you actually have a life? (Other than posting on here of course!) If you have that much time on your hands, why not take an English course? You could learn great things like, punctuation, spelling, where to put capital letters, etc, etc! Oh and since when did the atrocious thugs (such as football hooligans) throw meteorites from such a height?! I'd like to know how such an atrocious thug (obviously a Neanderthal man by your books!) could actually throw the thing so high, that it then comes down at such an angle and force that gravity would put on it?! I am deeply interested in your intelligent reply!!! from a rather disgruntled atrocious thug of an Albion fan!!! blueseagull

4:08pm Mon 26 Jul 10

The Good Driver says...

I think that should be a capital 'F' after !!!, blueseagull.......
I think that should be a capital 'F' after !!!, blueseagull....... The Good Driver

4:17pm Mon 26 Jul 10

blueseagull says...

Oh yeah! Schoolboy error! But I am allowed one mistake, he makes them all the time while having a go at us Albion fans and the club! I personally think he needs to stop, as it is tantamount to discrimination! As he would be the first to complain if he received any homophobic comments! So if you bother reading this reply. Leave our club and our peaceful fans alone!
Oh yeah! Schoolboy error! But I am allowed one mistake, he makes them all the time while having a go at us Albion fans and the club! I personally think he needs to stop, as it is tantamount to discrimination! As he would be the first to complain if he received any homophobic comments! So if you bother reading this reply. Leave our club and our peaceful fans alone! blueseagull

4:23pm Mon 26 Jul 10

The Good Driver says...

Should be a full stop after fans!). I make that two mistakes....
Should be a full stop after fans!). I make that two mistakes.... The Good Driver

4:29pm Mon 26 Jul 10

blueseagull says...

No it shouldn't as the exclamation mark suffices in this case! ;-) You would not have fans!. As that would be punctually incorrect. :-)
No it shouldn't as the exclamation mark suffices in this case! ;-) You would not have fans!. As that would be punctually incorrect. :-) blueseagull

4:35pm Mon 26 Jul 10

The Good Driver says...

The bracket after the exclamation mark means a full stop is required, rather than putting it after 'Albion'.
The bracket after the exclamation mark means a full stop is required, rather than putting it after 'Albion'. The Good Driver

4:35pm Mon 26 Jul 10

Gazza says...

14.33 And here we are at Uxbridge.

14.34 Sussex were batting 164 for 4 but the play has been suspended so the teams have gone in for an early tea due to a meteorite falling from the sky.

14.35 The 5-inch rock hit the middle wicket and Monty Panesar was run out for 34. The red-hot rock then bounced towards the spectators at Mac 19 sitting square with the wicket and broke into many fragments just before the boundary line with one piece hitting Mr Marszal Fall Square in the middle wicket. We all presumed Mr Marszal wasn’t wearing any lower protective gear as recommended by the M C C because he bent over touching his lower area in extreme pain, which brought tears to my eyes.

15.22 Anyway here come the teams again the wicket has been repaired and the rubble has been removed from the field of play let the match continue.

15.25 Wright hit the ball for 4 Sussex 168 for 5
14.33 And here we are at Uxbridge. 14.34 Sussex were batting 164 for 4 but the play has been suspended so the teams have gone in for an early tea due to a meteorite falling from the sky. 14.35 The 5-inch rock hit the middle wicket and Monty Panesar was run out for 34. The red-hot rock then bounced towards the spectators at Mac 19 sitting square with the wicket and broke into many fragments just before the boundary line with one piece hitting Mr Marszal Fall Square in the middle wicket. We all presumed Mr Marszal wasn’t wearing any lower protective gear as recommended by the M C C because he bent over touching his lower area in extreme pain, which brought tears to my eyes. 15.22 Anyway here come the teams again the wicket has been repaired and the rubble has been removed from the field of play let the match continue. 15.25 Wright hit the ball for 4 Sussex 168 for 5 Gazza

4:41pm Mon 26 Jul 10

The Good Driver says...

Must have lost a wicket between 15.22 and 15.25. Surely worth a mention?
Must have lost a wicket between 15.22 and 15.25. Surely worth a mention? The Good Driver

4:46pm Mon 26 Jul 10

blueseagull says...

Can't be real commentary?! Monty Panesar on 34???? ;-)
Can't be real commentary?! Monty Panesar on 34???? ;-) blueseagull

5:05pm Wed 28 Jul 10

Cheese Rolls says...

The Good Driver wrote:
It's not only The Argus, of course. 'Eurosport' is now reporting the incident and apparently the meteorite 'soared' towards the gentlemen. Not quite sure how this thing 'soared' when it had presumably reached it's terminal velocity approaching the Earth.
A 'small' meteorite will still enter the Earth's atmosphere at up to can be from 10km to 70 km per SECOND. However the friction of the atmosphere would normally reduce this to something akin to throwing a stone of a tall building.
[quote][p][bold]The Good Driver[/bold] wrote: It's not only The Argus, of course. 'Eurosport' is now reporting the incident and apparently the meteorite 'soared' towards the gentlemen. Not quite sure how this thing 'soared' when it had presumably reached it's terminal velocity approaching the Earth.[/p][/quote]A 'small' meteorite will still enter the Earth's atmosphere at up to can be from 10km to 70 km per SECOND. However the friction of the atmosphere would normally reduce this to something akin to throwing a stone of a tall building. Cheese Rolls

9:46pm Wed 28 Jul 10

The Good Driver says...

Probably true, but 'soaring' does not go with something dropping from the sky, at whatever velocity. 'Soaring' is generally upwards, not necessarily vertically.
'
Perhaps they meant it 'soared' from the ground to his chest.
Probably true, but 'soaring' does not go with something dropping from the sky, at whatever velocity. 'Soaring' is generally upwards, not necessarily vertically. ' Perhaps they meant it 'soared' from the ground to his chest. The Good Driver

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