I live in south benfleet in essex, england, about 30 miles from london, on the thames estuary. it was approximately 7.15pm when my son called me out to see what appeared to him to be unusual lights in the clear sky. he pointed out to me two lights, one following the other travelling from west north-west to east south-east. he had spotted another two before calling me, again travelling in the same direction. then another followed these, moving at an identical speed, in the same direction. the distance between the lights seemed to be the same ,with each one closely following the other, maybe ten seconds behind each one. as we continued to observe them, more lights appeared from behind the chimney again keeping the same distance from each other. i went indoors to get my binoculars and when i came out again to the back door the procession of lights were still moving in the same direction. in the space of about 15 minutes i lost count of the number of lights i saw but it must have been over 30. they seemed to be moving slightly faster than the high flying aircraft which are common above our heads, being on the flight paths of four major airports. the lights we observed were silent, with no navigation lights. through binoculars they looked like a very bright dot, moving quickly past the stars. whilst all this was going on i noticed a flash of light, which faded and disappeared in a second, only to flash again about 5 seconds later, and once more another 5 seconds later. each time it seemed to be in a slightly different position. this was almost on the same trajectory as the moving lights. when the parade of lights ended about 7.30pm i went indoors as it was cold. my son continued watching and 10 minutes later he called me out again to observe another light further south this time, towards the river, traveling east. again another light appeared behind that one, and then another, until there were five lights in a row, again with an identical distance between them, each taking about a minute to travel across the sky until fading into the haze.