Northern Lights from the UK: Norfolk, Essex and Scotland skies glow with Aurora Borealis

The astronomical phenomenon was spotted as far south as Essex

Northern lights were spotted over parts of the UK on Thursday night.

Also known as Aurora Borealis, the lights have been visible as far south as Essex, where it is unusual for the spectacle to be seen, according to BBC News. 

They have also been spotted in Norfolk on the west coast, and in South Wales.

AuroraWatch UK, a group run by the Space Physicists at Lancaster University which posts alerts on Twitter when the Northern Lights are visible in Britain, tweeted that there were “many” sightings in Scotland and northern England at around 9pm.

The ethereal light displays are caused by collisions between electrically charged particles from the sun that enter into the earth’s atmosphere.

They are most common above the magnetic poles of the northern and southern hemispheres, where they are known as aurora australis.

Northern Lights generally appear as spectacular waves or streaks of pale green and pink, but shades of red, yellow, blue and violet have also been spotted by stargazers.

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