Neighbours won't let sleeping Buddahs lie

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The Independent Online
Neighbours of comedian Vic Reeves have complained to their local council because the star of BBC2's Shooting Stars put squatting Buddahs on the gateposts of his home and erected a six-foot fence around his property.

Reeves, whose real name is Jim Moir, owns a 25-acre estate in Aldington in Kent where he has half-buried an Austin Somerset vintage car in one of his fields. The surrealist comic who dabbles in art and had a hit single with band The Wonderstuff is also reputed to play bagpipes outside his home.

But it is the fence and Buddahs which have has upset some locals who just like the comic's catchphrase "wouldn't let it lie".

"The fence is an eyesore," said next-door neighbour Tessa Nannini. "When he found the Buddahs he must have said to himself, 'They must be the most repulsive things I can find. I'll stick them on my pillars'." Other neighbours have complained that the fence makes visibility difficult on local roads and they have written to the council to raise safety issues. Villager Evelyn Ashenden said: "The fence affects our view coming out of the drive. It is dangerous. There was just a low fence before. There have been several complaints."

Ashford council has said it will investigate the structures because they no application for planning permission to erect the Buddahs and Aldington is in a designated area of outstanding natural beauty.

A spokeswoman for the star said he had no problems with his neighbours, but they were within their rights to complain to the council about the fence. Vic Reeves is currently appearing in a stage show version of Shooting Stars with his partner, Bob Mortimer.

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