“Jezza’s head is in my neighbours garden”

Stunned residents woke to find a new neighbour had moved into their quiet street – former Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson.

Not the opinionated TV presenter in person, but an 8ft high fibreglass sculpture of his head.

The towering bust, which forced the temporary closure of the road in Swinton, Greater Manchester, when it was hoisted into place with a crane, stands loud and proud in the front garden of the Alam family’s home.

Zohaib Alam, 15, entered a contest with Clarkson’s new motoring show The Grand Tour on behalf of his dad Zaheer. But the family never dreamed they would win.

Now the huge sculpture will remain in place on a wooden plinth in their small front garden as a publicity stunt for the next fortnight.

Fans of the Amazon Prime show had to tweet a hashtag to its Twitter profile for a chance to win either Clarkson, James May or Richard Hammond’s head, alongside a photograph of their garden.

The huge busts of the three presenters have been spotted in transit around the world.

Quite how Clarkson, 56, will go down in Salford however remains to be seen, as in 2011 he slammed the city when BBC’s move to MediaCity.

At the time he said: ‘ [Salford] is nowhere near any court that matters and nowhere near a single politician. Furthermore, if we ran the show from Salford, we’d be employing people from Salford.

‘People who were born there and thought ‘Yes, I like this. I see no reason to go anywhere else’. And in the world of television that could be a genuine handicap.

‘Every year we’d end up making a Christmas special from the Dog and Duck or the nearest Arndale Centre.’

His critical comments were widely attacked, with the then council leader saying his opinions made him ‘look like a slightly more sophisticated version of Alf Garnett’.

Zohaib, who lives with his parents and two sisters, said the sculpture has raised eyebrows on the street.

The Swinton High School pupil said: ‘My dad loves the show and I love those types of programme too.

‘I tweeted the show after I saw the competition and suddenly I got a tweet back to ask if our front garden was big enough for Jeremy Clarkson’s head.

‘I know Jeremy Clarkson has got a big head but we said it would fit after we found out the dimensions. It was amazing when we found out that we had won. It’s the first time we’ve won anything.

‘Everyone came out of their houses when it was delivered. It was a bit awkward and people were taking photographs, but it’s only a bit of fun. I think the idea is that the heads will move around from place to place.

‘Everyone on the street is talking about us and the statue and we want to thank them for their patience.’

The head was photographed on the M5 motorway just outside Birmingham on its way to Salford on Saturday.

Not all residents on the street however are overjoyed at their unusual new neighbour. One said: ‘It’s a bit of a tacky monstrosity but I guess we’ll have to live with it.’

The BBC’s flagship show Top Gear ended with Clarkson, May and Hammond as its presenters in March 2015 after Clarkson was famously sacked for punching a TV producer while filming on location.

The trio reformed to launch the big-budget The Grand Tour on Amazon Prime Video.

Top Gear returns on BBC Two in March with presenters Matt LeBlanc, Chris Harris and Rory Reid after Chris Evans stood down following the first series.

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