JET BLACK all over with giant triangular wings, the eerily silent aircraft cut powerful beams of light through the night sky as it cruised over the Five Valleys.

That is the vivid description of a UFO spotted near Chalford contained in newly released Ministry of Defence files.

The sighting by an anonymous witness is one of dozens of baffling UFO encounters revealed for the first time in the previously top secret files, which can now be downloaded free of charge from the National Archives website.

This particular incident occurred on the evening of Sunday, September 3, 2000, near the Ram Inn in Old Bussage and is described in a letter to the then Stroud MP David Drew.

In it, the witness, whose name is censored, reports seeing an all-black triangle-shaped craft slowly moving across the sky with three ‘very powerful’ beams of light shooting out ahead of it.

These are said to emanate from ‘dome-like globes’ beneath the object, which was also reported to have ‘extremely long’ wings with small red lights on each tip.

Small diagrams of the craft are also included in the letter, outlining its unusual shape and features.

Later the description reads: "The engines were very quiet – something like Rolls-Royce turbines of which I believe there were three.

"It passed over me heading in the direction of Bisley but coming from the direction of Stroud/Gloucester."

It ends by revealing that one other person the witness knows in Bisley also saw ‘exactly the same’ object.

The next page of the file shows a response letter to David Drew from the MoD, acknowledging the sighting and confirming that there is no evidence to suggest the airspace was breached by any ‘unauthorised activity’ on that date.

"Unless there a potential threat to the UK from an external military source, we do not attempt to identify the precise nature of each sighting," the letter reads.

"My department has no expertise or role in respect of the existence of extraterrestrial lifeforms, about which it remains open-minded but I would add that to date the MoD knows of no evidence to substantiate the existence of these alleged phenomena."