A homeowner who ignored an order to tackle a “horrendously overgrown” garden has been charged almost £3,000.

The “garden jungle” received several complaints from neighbours in Park Avenue, Eastbourne.

Despite promises from the owner that it would be clear within three months, nothing was done.

Eastbourne Borough Council workers spent two days clearing the overgrown bushes which spilled over the fence.

Councillor Colin Swansborough said: “Taking enforcement action is a last resort, but those who ignore the advice of our officers should be in no doubt that we will take direct action if needed.

“Quite understandably some residents in Park Avenue wanted this horrendously overgrown garden jungle cut back.

The Argus: The overgrown garden in EastbourneThe overgrown garden in Eastbourne (Image: Eastbourne Borough Council)

“I’m all for giving wildlife a home and allowing the grass to grow and hedgerows to flourish, but this was beyond any reasonable interpretation of that approach to gardening.”

The council's teams had to cut through overgrown bushes with a chainsaw to get access to the garden.

Clearing the garden revealed a greenhouse covered in ivy.

A section 215 untidy land notice was served by the council which gave the owner three months to tidy their land.

The Argus: A section 215 untidy land notice was served on the ownerA section 215 untidy land notice was served on the owner (Image: Eastbourne Borough Council)

The notice allows councils to demand "land to be cleaned up when its condition adversely affects the amenity of the area".

Councils need to consider the "condition of the site, the impact on the surrounding area and the scope of their powers".

Since 1999, around 80 per cent of section 215 notices have secured compliance from the land owner.

The charge on the Park Avenue house was made to cover the costs of the clearance work and will be recovered when it is sold.

Neighbouring Wealden District Council fined an Uckfield man for failing to clean his rubbish using the same untidy land notice in 2014.

Lewes District Council has also considered using the notice for a construction site in Seaford which has been left largely untouched for six years.