ECCENTRIC Jake Mangel Wurzel's latest exploit has landed him in hot water.
He carefully built his 18ft-high Civic Folly over the past four months.
Now, it has been demolished at council tax payers' expense, for being put up on public land without permission.
His sculpture was torn down from its site near the Jobcentre Plus building in High Street in the middle of Huddersfield.
Kirklees Council did not disclose the cost of removal.
But that didn't worry Jake, 66, who said he was furious as he was only a week away from unveiling the monument.
He said he had planned to make it Huddersfield's entry for the Turner art prize. Now he has managed to retrieve parts of it.
"I've been folly-building for many years and I wanted to show the people of Huddersfield what art really was.
"I worked through the night and at weekends to complete it and I was never challenged by anyone," he said.
Jake - born John Gray - was once dubbed King of the Eccentrics for his joker lifestyle. He once appeared before Huddersfield magistrates for claiming to be a Sikh, to avoid prosecution for riding his motorcycle without a helmet.
Jake, from Salendine Nook, said he was prompted to build his town centre sculpture after seeing a work by Spanish artist Eduardo Chillida in the Yorkshire Sculpture Park at Bretton.
He said it cost him £200 to create and he had incorporated a 3ft-high pillar mistakenly left when the jobcentre building went up in the 1960s.
Jake said: "The pillar was an eyesore and I always wanted to create something from it.
"My first thought was a respectable little bird table, but then I decided on something on a larger scale."
He started work in October and planned an unveiling of the one-and-a-half-ton sculpture next Saturday.
A Kirklees Council spokesman said: "It didn't take very long to clear. We dealt with it in the same way as we deal with other graffiti."