Flying saucers, ghosts, alien abductions and hunting Nessie - all in a day's work for UFO expert

A UFO expert is holding a series of lectures in St Leonards with guest speakers offering up their unique insights into the strange world of the paranormal.

Malcolm Robinson, 49, has become something of an authority on flying saucer sightings, alien abductions and ghostly goings on since forming Strange Phenomena Investigations (SPI) in 1979.

He even teamed up with Hollywood film director Steven Spielberg in 1997 to hatch ambitious plans to capture the Loch Ness Monster.

Although so far Nessie seems to have eluded him, the Hastings-based Scot is still a leading figure on the UK paranormal scene and has appeared in a host of national newspapers.

However, Mr Robinson is no crackpot preaching to all and sundry about government conspiracies and small green men from Mars coming down to Earth to abduct our people and ruin our corn fields.

Far from it. In fact, despite claiming to have seen a UFO while out playing with friends as a child, Mr Robinson describes himself as 'the original cynic' - but he does admit his beliefs have grown stronger the more he has investigated.

The Scot still claims 95 per cent of UFO sightings have a simple explanation which does not involve flying saucers or alien invasions.

But what about the remaining five per cent? Well it is that grey area which Mr Robinson has dedicated so much of his spare time to.

He said: "At the end of the day it is about uncovering answers.

"I've always been interested in strange phenomena but when I started off I was extremely sceptical - ghost, poltergeists and UFOs were nonsense as far as I was concerned and so I set out on a mission to prove it was.

"However, Once you get rid of the nonsense you're left with some fantastic stories. I was a cynic and now I am a believer but I am still very sceptical talking to people who want to tell me they have seen this or experience that."

So what can people expect from the lectures then? According to Mr Robinson: "They give people an opportunity to come along and find out for themselves.

"They may have seen a ghost or something strange and at the meetings they can talk with confidence and security.

"They should keep an open mind and share their experiences with other people."

First up is Mr Robinson's talk on ghosts, poltergeists and the paranormal on Saturday May 17 (3pm until 6.30pm).

Mr Robinson is then joined by Tina Larkin on July 26 for a pair of talks (The Scottish UFO Phenomenon and The Ghosts and I) with the first starting at 3pm and the second and 5pm.

On September 27 Nick Pope will talk about the Ministry of Defence and X-Files from 3pm until 6.30pm and last up is Ross Hemsworth's The Roller Coaster Ride from Sceptic to Believer - again from 3pm.

All the lectures take place in Concordia Hall, Church Road in St Leonards and tickets are 5 or 4 for members of SPI.

Have you ever seen anything strange in the skys above Hastings? Ever been visited by aliens or caught a glimpse of a ghost? Let us know by leaving a comment below.