Brinsley Le Poer Trench, 8th Earl of Clancarty

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William Francis Brinsley Le Poer Trench, 8th Earl of Clancarty, 7th Marquess of Heusden (18 September 1911 – 18 May 1995) was a prominent ufologist.[1] He was an Irish peer, as well as a nobleman in the Dutch nobility.


He was the fifth son of the William Frederick Le Poer Trench, 5th Earl of Clancarty and Mary Gwatkin Ellis. He was educated at the Pangbourne Nautical College.

From 1956 to 1959 Clancarty edited the Flying Saucer Review and founded the International Unidentified Object Observer Corps. He also found employment selling advertising space for a gardening magazine housed opposite Waterloo Station.

In 1967, he founded Contact International and served as its first president. He also served as vice-president of the British UFO Research Association (BUFORA). Clancarty was an honorary life member of the now defunct Ancient Astronauts Society which supported the ideas put forward by Erich von Däniken in his 1968 book Chariots of the Gods?.

In 1975 he succeeded to the earldom on the death of his half-brother, giving him a seat in the British Parliament. He used his new position to found a UFO Study Group at the House of Lords, introducing Flying Saucer Review to its library and pushing for the declassification of UFO data.

Four years later he organised a celebrated debate in the House of Lords on UFOs which attracted many speeches on both sides of the question. In one debate, Lord Strabolgi, for the Government, declared that there was nothing to convince him that any alien spacecraft had ever visited the Earth.

Private life[edit]

Clancarty married first, in 1940, Diana (1919–1999), daughter of Sir William Younger, Bt. This marriage was dissolved in 1947. He married secondly, in 1961, Mrs Wilma Belknap (née Vermilyea) (1915–1995) and that marriage was dissolved in 1969. His third marriage was in 1974, to Mrs Mildred Allewyn Spong (née Bensusan) (1895–1975). She died in 1975 but Clancarty remarried a fourth time, in 1976, to Mrs May Beasley (née Radonicich) (1904–2003).

He lived most of his life in South Kensington and died in Bexhill-on-Sea in 1995, leaving his extensive collection of papers to Contact International.

He was succeeded to the earldom by his nephew Nicholas Le Poer Trench (b. 1952).

Hollow earth[edit]

Trench was a firm believer in flying saucers, and in particular, the Hollow Earth hypothesis, he discussed his ideas about the hollow earth in his book Secret of the Ages: UFOs from Inside the Earth.[2] He also claimed that he could trace his descent from 63,000BC, when beings from other planets had landed on Earth in spaceships.[3]

Most humans, he said, were descended from these aliens: "This accounts for all the different colour skins we've got here," he said in 1981. A few of these early aliens did not come from space, he explained, but emerged through tunnels from a civilisation which "still existed beneath the Earth's crust." There were seven or eight of these tunnels altogether, one at the North Pole, another at the South Pole, and others in such places as Tibet. "I haven't been down there myself," Clancarty said, "but from what I gather [these beings] are very advanced."

Other claims[edit]

According to Trench in his book The Sky People, Adam and Eve, Noah any many of the other characters from the Bible originally lived on Mars. Trench believed that Adam and Eve were experiment creations of extraterrestrials.[4] His claim was that the Biblical description of the Garden of Eden was inconsistent with what was on Earth and as Mars contained canals, that the Garden of Eden must have been located on Mars. He further claimed that the north polar ice cap melted on Mars, and this caused the descendants of Adam and Eve to move to Earth.[5][6]

Trench also claimed to know a former U.S. test pilot who said he was one of six persons present at a meeting between President Eisenhower and a group of aliens, which allegedly took place at Edwards Air Force Base on April 4, 1954. Clancarty reported that the test pilot told him "Five different alien craft landed at the base. Three were saucer-shaped and two were cigar shaped... the aliens looked something like humans, but not exactly." [7]


  • The Sky People (1960)
  • Men Among Mankind (1962)
  • Forgotten Heritage (1964)
  • The Flying Saucer Story (1966)
  • Operation Earth (1969)
  • The Eternal Subject (1973)
  • Secret of the Ages (1974).
  • Reptiles from the Internal World (1979)
  • China in the Closet: A Romantic Mystery (1981)
  • Egos and Sub-Egos (1983)
  • UFOs: Just Shiny Birds? with Anna Robb (1984).


  1. ^ "( Brinsley Le Poer Trench: "Legends and the case for Hollow Earth."". Retrieved 2008-02-05. 
  2. ^ Secret of the Ages: UFOs from Inside the Earth, Brinsley Le Poer Trench, Souvenir Press Ltd; 1st edition (October 1974) ISBN 0-285-62153-X
  3. ^ Curing Hiccups with Small Fires: A Delightful Miscellany of Great British Eccentrics, Karl Shaw, 2009, p. 105
  4. ^ Lost Lands, Forgotten Realms: Sunken Continents, Vanished Cities, and the Kingdoms that History Misplaced, Bob Curran, 2009, p. 31
  5. ^ The Book Of Lists: The Original Compendium of Curious Information, David Wallechinsky, 2009
  6. ^ Atlantis Rising, Brad Steiger, Dell Pub. Co., 1973
  7. ^ [Source: Ruth Montgomery's "Aliens Among Us" page 227]

External links[edit]

Peerage of Ireland
Preceded by
Grenville Le Poer Trench
Earl of Clancarty
2nd creation
Succeeded by
Nicholas Le Poer Trench
Dutch nobility
Preceded by
Grenville Le Poer Trench
Marquess of Heusden
Succeeded by
Nicholas Le Poer Trench