Belfast Telegraph

From 5G to car horns, theories grows over cause of mystery Strangford Lough hum

Strangford Lough
Strangford Lough
Lauren Harte

By Lauren Harte

New theories are emerging about the cause of a strange humming sound heard around Strangford Lough in recent days which has left locals baffled.

Belfast Telegraph readers have been trying to figure out what is behind the noise since it was reported by this newspaper yesterday.

From 5G to cars, Stephen Nolan and Brexit - the suggestions were certainly varied.

The mysterious sound, which lasted for more than three hours, was heard from around midnight on Friday.

Ian McConnell was among those left puzzled and took to Twitter to try to figure out the cause.

Mr McConnell captured a video with the peculiar humming sound to share on the social media platform and the noise - which sounds like a loud car horn going off - can be heard clearly.

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The 52-year-old writer, who lives in Kilclief, which is three miles from Strangford and four miles from Ardglass, said he could only hear the hum from outside his house.

Mr McConnell said he was letting his cat out in the early hours of Saturday morning when he first heard the sound, which he described as being "like a droning or a hum".

"I've lived here for two years and I'm often in and out at night because of the cat and I've never heard anything like it before, so I was very struck.

"It was very loud," he said.

Mr McConnell described it as a "very eerie and kind of unnerving sort of sound" and "kept checking back over the next few hours" before going to bed but it was still going on.

"It also never varied in tone, didn't go up or down. It was constant and like a horn," he added.

Readers took to social media yesterday to try and solve the mystery for themselves.

Some reported hearing a similar sound in other areas including Ards, Ballygowan, Bangor, Belfast and even as far away as Portstewart.

One reader, John Paul Gallagher, quipped that perhaps BBC presenter Stephen Nolan, whose home is on the shores of Strangford Lough, could be behind the noise, writing: "Nolan left his alarm clock on."

Ian McConnell
Ian McConnell

Others blamed the current Brexit debacle, with Tommy Hanna commenting: "I think they are building a bridge in the Irish sea for Brexit." Stephen Cunningham added that it was "the sound of Brexit".

Some even blamed the humming noise on the advent of 5G or suggested that it is coming from electricity poles.

Having turned to the internet for clues himself, Mr McConnell said there have been reports for years of a "hum" being heard in different places around the world.

Closer to home, he said there had been a case in east Belfast in May 2015 involving a drone that "was apparently traced to Palace Barracks", adding: "But that was more metallic and whiny and high-pitched."

Mr McConnell said yesterday that he was still just as puzzled as to the cause of the sound.

"I'm surprised that no one has come forward yet to say they knew what it was," he said.

"People always think that it could be 5G and that it's going to herald the end of the world so they could be right.

"Someone contacted me on Twitter to say they had analysed the frequency range and said it matched that of a Kia car horn.

"Maybe, but it went on for more than three hours so if that was the case, someone was very insistent and must have really wanted attention to keep it going for that long!"

Did you hear the strange hum in Strangford last weekend? Or do you know what it was?

If so, contact

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