Heath beast or Loch Ness monster?

Two walkers thought they had stumbled across the “beast of Hampstead Heath” after a short stroll on the beauty spot.

Lenny Wilson had been taking snaps of the picturesque winter scene when he settled on a group of runners overlooking the London skyscape for one of his many shots.

But when he got home and inspected his picture, he and fellow walker Rob Moore thought they had captured the form of a “giant snake” – or as they called it “Heathsnake” – slithering away from the bunched athletes.

Mr Wilson, from Tufnell Park, said: “When we got home we thought, ‘What do we have here?’

“It looked guilty, like it had snuck off with a football from the athletes in the picture.”

The picture does bear a striking resemblance to famous images of the Loch Ness monster, Nessie.

But on closer inspection Mr Wilson, in his 30s admitted, it was “probably a piece of wood”.