A JIGSAW enthusiast from Bolton has completed the world’s largest commercially available puzzle.

Derek Pickles, who works at Drew Brady & Co, completed the mammoth task alongside a group of local enthusiasts and raised a huge £6,000 for charity.

The operations director has been part of a number of jigsaw odysseys while working at the textile firm, based in Dove Mills, Deane.

The latest puzzle consisted of 48,000 pieces and, when completed, showed a range of iconic scenes from across the globe.

Celebrity TV gardener Alan Titchmarsh joined the team for the end of the jigsaw and was given the honour of placing the final piece of the puzzle.

Mr Pickles said: “Completing the jigsaws is relaxing, I really enjoy it. It keeps the brain moving and its better than just watching TV.”

Once completed, the money raised by the jigsaw team is to be split between Cancer Research UK, the Yorkshire Air Ambulance service and Christchurch Church in Ilkley, Yorkshire.

The finished puzzle is now mounted on a wall at Drew Brady & Co’s headquarters alongside a raft of other scenes, although the area had to be strengthened to ensure the 7.6x2m picture could be safely displayed.

Before moving it to Dove Mill, the completed jigsaw was displayed at the Ilkley church where Mr Titchmarsh visited.

The famous presenter was given the final piece and tasked with finding the gap and putting the finishing touches on the giant work.

It is not the first time that Mr Pickles has challenged himself to complete a massive jigsaw for charity.

In 2011, the 63-year-old completed a 32,200-piece puzzle in seven months and 450 hours, which at the time was the largest commercially available but has now been usurped by the new jigsaw.

Following that effort, he claimed that he would complete a 48,000-piece puzzle “within a year” if one was created, a promise that he would go on to keep.

The latest jigsaw took less time to complete, with a group of eight people spending around five months finishing the work.

Due to the size of the puzzle, the pieces had to be delivered in bags containing sections so the group was able to distribute the puzzle in parts to all members of the team.

The jigsaws are created by French company Grafika Puzzles which has previously released a number of huge images including a range of 3,900 piece sets.