Wow! Would be fantastic to see that from the UK - maybe all the light pollution we have could have an unexpected benefit. With the 'pool' of Siberian air we have about to cover the UK, who knows, maybe we will get a chance to view some here this winter.
Here's a photograph of the only decent display of light pillars I've observed from Scotland. By chance, the tail of Comet Hale Bopp is in nice alignment with the light pillars! Taken from Fairlie Moor, Ayrshire back in 1997 - the good old days of film photography!
Great image Tom! I can imagine if I saw pillars like that my first reaction would be to check the current conditions on Spaceweather, after being confused there was no active UK spaceweather I would like to think I would come to the conclusion they were light pillars
They are caused by flat ice crystals in the atmosphere being alligned in a certain direction sometimes they are caused by natural light (sun/moon sometimes venus) sometimes if its cold enough for the ice crystals to survive at lower temperatures the reflect light of man made lights, here is one of my pics of a sun pillar, doesnt look quite as dramatic as the pics above.
This was taken on the 21st of March, i was supprised to see it as i didnt think it would be cold enough here in southern England, but then you have to consider the ice crystals are high in the atmosphere where it is very cold!