THE Lake District has become the international focus for a fascinating 'sci-fi phenomenon' - like the one that inspired the alien horror movie The Blob.

Mysterious deposits of a translucent jelly have suddenly appeared in the Lakeland fells, intriguing locals and baffling scientists.

Walkers began to notice the blobs - some of them the size of a foot - while out and about in the Patterdale fells.

The phenomenon is now likely to join Bownessie and large black cat sightings as enduring Lake District mysteries.

Lakes holiday cottage owner Rob Shephard said he had come across around 10 blobs 'floating on top of some puddles'.

"They were the size of my foot. I didn't touch the jelly. I just took some snaps."

Village store owner Tom Driscoll reported finding 'six or eight piles of the stuff'.

Scientists admit they don't know what causes the phenomenon, but some national newspapers have speculated that it could be 'alien jelly', like that found by four policemen in Philadelphia in 1950 - an incident which inspired the sci-fi B-movie The Blob, starring Steve McQueen.