A LARGE and potentially venemous tarantula is the last thing a Pershore dog walker expected to find in a residential area of the town on a Sunday afternoon.

But that is exactly what Chris Chamberlain discovered on the side of the path in St Andrew's Road, Pershore, at the weekend.

The 20-year-old was out walking his friend's dog, Gibson, in St Andrew's Road when he noticed the huge - but dead - tarantula in the grass, inches away from where he was walking.

"It was about 12.30pm," he said. "I spotted it as I was walking back to the house in the residential area. Gibson didn't notice it but I did. It was on the grass."

Mr Chamberlain decided to head back and told his friend Scott Henry, who works at the West Midland's Safari Park, about the scary looking spider.

"I told Scott because he works with animals," added Mr Chamberlain. "It's a bit worrying because these sort of things shouldn't be on the lose. I was a bit scared initially because I assumed it was alive. If it had been alive I would've run off because I'm not keen on spiders.

"It's bigger than the dogs paw, around the size of my palm, maybe a bit larger. It's not very nice."

Although the pair don't yet know what type of spider it is Mr Henry plans to find out when he returns to work at the safari park.

"After Chris told me what had happened we went up to have a look and we found it. It was definitely dead," said Mr Henry. "I am not sure what type it is though.

"I scooped it up in some tupperware and we have it at home now. I put a photo of it on Facebook and it got a lot of reaction."

The friends also don't know where the spider came from.

Angela Matthews, Mr Henry's mother, said she thinks it has either escaped or someone has just chucked it after it died.

"Luckily the dog didn't pick it up," she said. "But there are children and other dogs all around here. I think either it's escaped, someone's been playing with it outside and dropped it and it's died and they have left it there or it's died and they have just chucked it out. It shouldn't have been left there."