A myriad of weird, wonderful, and often giant objects have mysteriously turned up on our beaches over the years.

Some of these phenomena have been carefully planned PR stunts, while others remain mysteries of the natural world. 

So, do you remember...

1) The moment when a huge Spanish flag made of umbrellas decorated Bournemouth beach

Constructed from over 600 parasols, the giant flag was commissioned by Three UK earlier this year to announce the news that its customers could use their phone abroad at no extra cost in Spain.

Dorset Beaches:

2) The moment when Godzilla’s friend emerged from the sea to terrorise Bournemouth

The creature, which bore an uncanny resemblance to Richard Branson, was erected on the shore at Bournemouth beach last year as part of a Virgin Media advertising film.

‘Bransonzilla’ was worked on for 500 hours by a team of sculptors and weighed more than six tonnes.  

See our Bransonzilla gallery here

Dorset Beaches: Jellyfish on Portland

3) The moment when giant jellyfish invaded Dorset beaches

Several sightings of the barrel jellyfish were reported last year after many were washed ashore along the Dorset coast due to spring tides and windy weather.

This particular species of jellyfish is relatively rare in coastal areas and can measure up to three feet.

Dorset Beaches:

4) The moment when a 40ft dragon skull was found nestled among the fossils on Charmouth Beach

Beachgoers were shocked to see a massive dragon’s skull appear on Charmouth Beach in 2013.

The skull, measuring 40ft long by 8ft wide and standing 9ft tall was actually a sculpture installed overnight by movie and TV streaming service, Blinkbox to celebrate the launch of fantasy series, Game of Thrones on its service.

Dorset Beaches:

5) The moment when large futuristic machines took over Bournemouth seafront in the name of art

The third Arts by the Sea Festival saw artist Joe Rush and his Mutoid Waste Company bring a convoy of giant articulated creations to Bournemouth.

Among the machines on display was the Dino Dumper triceratops, which blew smoke from its nostrils.

Dorset Beaches:

6) The moment when a deckchair fit for a giant was unfolded on Bournemouth beach

This deckchair broke world records as the largest of its kind, measuring a whopping 8.5m tall and 5.5m wide.

It was commissioned by drinks brand, Pimms to mark the official start of British Summer Time back in 2012.  

Dorset Beaches: THAT’S SANDY: Four celebrity heads, created on Weymouth Beach from 40 tonnes of sand to announce a new hair care range

7) The moment when David Beckham, Harry Styles, Joey Essex and Frankie Cocozza turned up to Weymouth Beach

Ok, so it wasn’t really them. They were brought to life in sand form by artist Mark Anderson, who created a Mount Rushmore-esque sculpture of the four celebrities renowned for their hairstyles.

It was commissioned by Lynx to mark the launch of their new shampoo and styling range in 2012.


Dorset Beaches: The prints on the beach to promote Pride in Bournemouth

8) The moment when the footprints of a giant lion pride were discovered on Bournemouth beach

Huge pawprints in the sand turned out not to be a pride of giant lions prowling the town but the efforts of a public arts project called Pride in Bournemouth in 2011. The project saw scores of decorated lion sculptures displayed across the town.

9) The moment when a strange egg was found on Bournemouth beach by a member of the public

The giant egg-shaped object was found washed up on the beach in 2011 and filmed by a beachgoer who resembled it to a ‘massive egg, urchin thing’. The video received more than 420,000 views.

Dorset Beaches:

10) The moment when 200 turtles turned up on Bournemouth beach

In 2009, Bournemouth beach welcomed 200 hawksbill turtles to it shore, looking as if they had just crawled out of the sea to lay their eggs.

The turtles were in fact life-size cardboard models placed on the beach by the International Fund for Animal Welfare to raise awareness of the impact of the wildlife souvenir trade on endangered turtles and other threatened species.