Walkers discover 'skeleton' washed up on banks of the River Thames

Seemingly 'gruesome' discovery made in Gravesend

Walkers discover 'skeleton' washed up from the River Thames

A seemingly gruesome sight stumbled upon by walkers in Gravesend prompted fears that a skeleton had been found in the River Thames on Wednesday.

The sinister-looking scene appeared to show a skeleton lying in the muddy banks in Gravesend, near the mouth of the river, with its legs sticking out and its rib cage on show.

But a closer inspection revealed that it was an optical illusion - and the 'skeleton' was actually just a bunch of old rope and metal.

Photographer Rob Powell, who was at the pier taking pictures of a ship for website OnTheThames.net, was alerted to the scene and uploaded the image to Twitter

According to the Daily Mail, he said: "I had to double take at first as it's not the kind of thing you usually see by the riverside.

"Obviously, it looked like a skeleton, which was a bit grim, and it was only when I got closer that I realised it was metal and old rope."

According to the Mirror, Gravesend town centre manager Graham Long tweeted: "We've not seen anything like that before - how bizarre and intriguing."

And the town's RNLI spokesman Alan Carr said it looked "very sinister".

The idea the discovery was a skeleton would not have been a far-fetched one - the Thames gives up around 50 corpses a year.

The Daily Mail adds that a host of other interesting remains have been found in the riverbed and banks, including prehistoric animal remains. The tooth of a 28-metre-long Megalodon shark thought to be 1.5 million years old was discovered, as well as a section from the skull of a 30,000-year-old woolly rhino.

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