Fireball seen in UK skies - meteor or space junk ?

Fireball seen over the UK on 21st September
Fireball seen above UK on 21st September
A dramatic fireball was seen streaking across the night sky above the UK at around 11pm on the evening of Friday 21st September. Hundreds of reports came in from across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, and the object was seen as as far north as the Shetland Islands. Opinion remains divided as to whether the shooting star was a meteor (i.e. a lump of rock) or a piece of man-made space junk that was re-entering the atmosphere. Either way, the event lasted for around 25 to 30 seconds and clearly resulted in the object breaking up into fragments as it burnt up in the upper atmosphere.

It's not unusual to see shooting stars in the night sky, and typically we can expect to see around six per hour on a clear night, however, this object was much larger, slower and brighter than one might expect from a typical meteor.

If you managed to see the meteor, or even got a photo or video, then please let us know.