Becky Abrey, 29, saw a large black cat roaming a field near Praa Sands’ beach in Cornwall, where she was celebrating her birthday lunch with family. The group were shocked to see the big cat across the carpark, just a few feet away from where they stood. Ms Abrey told the Daily Mail: “We had just had Sunday lunch and went for a walk on the beach and came back to the car and it was just on the field. It was the car park opposite the bar and looks up towards the field. “I was on the phone with my fiance’s grandmother who was wishing me a happy birthday and just said, ‘there’s a big cat, I’ve got to put the phone down’.
“I’ve seen so many articles about them and there are never any pictures of them and I wanted to get pictures and video.
“I saw the one this week and was thinking, “does it really exist?
“Now I’ve seen it and know that it does.”
She described the animal as “at least Alsatian sized or bigger”, and feared getting too close to the creature.
Ms Abrey added: “I didn’t want to get too close and zoomed in and out so you can get some perspective. It was at least Alsatian sized or bigger.
“When I read about them I always think, “it’s just a decent-sized farm cat” but this certainly wasn’t.
“It’s crazy. I still can’t quite believe it. Honestly, it was huge, far bigger than any domestic cat.
“I feel like I imagined everyone saw it. It’s like seeing the Loch Ness Monster.”
The sighting comes days after a dog suffered injuries following a vicious attack, leaving him with a claw mark on his shoulder.
Owner James Stephenson, 23, said he came face-to-face with the big cat himself.
He said: “Over the last couple of weeks we have seen this large black cat walking down the back wall of the field at the back of our garden.
“It’s on a stone wall, often carrying something the size of a lamb. Whatever it’s been carrying is about a foot off the ground so it’s very big.
“We’ve not paid it much attention because they normally shy away from humans.
“We’re not sure whether it’s a puma or a panther but it’s been confirmed that it’s a big cat.”
Forensic experts were called to examine footprints of the animal, who laid tracks at the village near Callington in Cornwall.
The experts confirmed the footprints came from a big cat, while police said “something has been here which should not be”.