Gardener wants to set fire to 10ft hedge turned into middle finger

A gardener wants to set fire to a 10 foot hedge he turned into a middle finger. Richard Jackson, 64, has displayed the crudely-cut hedge in his front garden for 20 years.

He started practising topiary art two decades ago as a joke for drinkers at a pub opposite his home.

Mr Jackson said these would tease him while he trimmed his hedges.

To distract from his own activity, the gardener cut his greenery into the shape of a middle finger.

The gag became known far outside his own village of Warton, Warwickshire, and even gained plenty of fans on social media.

Hundreds of visitors are understood to have popped by to take their own pictures of the hedges.

But Mr Jackson said he has now grown tired of the upkeep.

He branded the work a “pain in the backside”.

The gardener said: “I’m fed up with it, to be honest with you.

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“We still have folks come up to take photos but it’s past its prime.”

Local villagers, however, have another idea, and are determined to keep the local “folklore” going.

Some are even considering launching a “Save the Warton Bush” campaign.

One villager said: “The bush is now a part of village folklore and must be kept for future generations to enjoy.

“I think most people would pitch in to keep it well maintained. It’s become a symbol of defiance against the system and most people here would urge Richard to keep it.”

Not all Wartoners are keen with the hedge, however, with the middle finger having been subject to council questioning.

Warwickshire Police confirmed an officer was sent to investigate although they had not received a direct complaint.

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