Sir Elton John's private jet was forced to make an emergency landing at Farnborough Airport in Hampshire after getting into technical difficulties.
The music legend, 74, was on his way to the US for a performance in New York on Monday, when a fault was detected in the plane while travelling at 10,000 ft over Ireland, leaving the pilot with no choice but to turn back and land at Farnborough.
The pilot is believed to have aborted landing twice as winds hit 80mph on Monday during the height of Storm Franklin.
Sir Elton, who lives in Old Windsor, Berkshire with his partner David Furnish and their twin boys, Zachary, 8, and Elijah, 6, was said to be shaken by the ordeal, but completely unharmed.
Plumber Phil Thomson was carrying out maintenance work nearby, and saw the drama unfold.
He told ITV Meridian "I was in an room that runs parallel to the main office.
"I could see emergency vehicles lined up - Specialist fire engines, ambulances, police cars and ambulances.
"I saw all 3 attempts.
"It was harrowing.
"The first one you could see the plane was in difficulty, the plane had its nose up and tried to reduce its speed but clearly there were issues affecting it.
"The pilot got it down to 300ft then decided to do a bypass.
The worker, from Bracknell, added, "10 minutes later he came round for a second attempt - a lot flatter and lower.
"This time the strength of the wind, the gusts were intermittent.
"To be a passenger in that plane...I wouldn't trade places with Elton for all this money at that point.
"The third time the wind died down and the plane kissed the runway and it finally went smoothly!"
It's believed the private aircraft left the airport, for New York at 10.20am, but suffered hydraulic failure around an hour into the flight.
The pilot made the decision to return to Farnborough, making the emergency landing.
The 'Rocketman' managed to continue his trip, hours later, making it to the States in time for his scheduled performance. He recently returned to the stage for the first time in almosttwo years, resuming his Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour in America.
The star took to Twitter to announce he had arrived in the Big Apple, posting "Hello New York!"
Sir Elton is expected to play in states across the US until the end of April, after which he will begin the European leg of the tour.
In November, he announced two special homecoming shows to end the tour in July.In January he postponed his Dallas shows in Texas after testing positive forCovid-19.
In a statement, Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire & Rescue Service said, “Firefighters from Rushmoor, Hartley Wintney, Basingstoke, Fleet, Yateley and Surrey FRS were called at 11.16 on Monday morning to an incident at Farnborough Airport.
“No action was taken by HIWFRS with the incident dealt with by the airport fire service.”
ITV approached Farnborough Airport, but they declined to comment on the incident.