Thousands of nautical-themed pieces of Lego which washed up on the beach at Whitehaven are among the weirdest finds revealed in a new list by the National Trust.

The conservation charity has put together a compilation of odd objects discovered around the UK’s coastline, with the Cumbrian finds making the top 10 for their strangeness.

This comes as many gardens and parks run by the National Trust will be open for free during the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.

The organisation says it is continuing to work hard to keep open spaces accessible to people while it closes houses, shops and cafes to restrict the spread of coronavirus.

Other quirky items include a can of Russian bug spray, sonar equipment from Texas and the remains of an entire 1980s picnic discovered at Formby near Liverpool, including a packet of crisps with the contents still intact.

The Whitehaven Lego haul were swept here by the tides from a spillage from a cargo ship near Land’s End back in 1994. A container carrying millions of pieces of the popular toy fell overboard during stormy weather. Remnants were also found in Devon and Cornwall

Also in the top 20 list, there were two more finds on the Whitehaven coastline – tiny plastic soldiers and some Rowntree’s Smarties lids from pre 1988, when the confection was sold to Nestle.

The National Trust has released the list to shines a spotlight on the issue of marine debris which continues to blight UK beaches despite a recent rise in public awareness. Its ranger teams and volunteers look after 780 miles of coastline and they are asking the public to pitch in and pick up some litter when they’re out and about.

Phil Dyke, coastal specialist at the National Trust, said: “It’s fascinating to hear of the unusual things that land on our beaches, whether they’re relics from history or objects that have travelled thousands of miles.

“But as weird and wonderful as these items are, they tell a more serious story about the permanent nature of plastic, and the constant deluge of marine litter arriving on our shores.

“No one in the UK lives more than 75 miles from the coast, so whether we’re in the city or the country, everything we do impacts on the health of our seas.”

Another quirky find was a council bin that was found to have travelled 70 miles along the River Nene from Peterborough to Blakeney Point, a coastal beauty spot in Norfolk famed for its grey seal population.

The bin, dubbed “Pete” by Trust staff, was returned to its home constituency after a social media campaign to find its owner.

Though the National Trust has closed its paid-for properties due to the coronavirus, there are still plenty of places to explore outdoors.

Sophie Badrick, the Colourful Coast Project Officer at Whitehaven, said: “The bulbs are coming out around the candlestick, like daffodils and crocus and pockets of spring flowers coming up all over the site too.

“It’s nice for a walk – and there’s plenty of room for social distancing.”