A Polish nurse who works in the operating theatre of Windsor's Prince Charles Eye Unit was 'stoned' repeatedly by a council gardener who shouted abuse at her, saying 'go back to your country you bitch'.

One of the rocks hurled by Stephen Hemmingham hit the nurse in the eyeball, causing damage which means she can no longer help with delicate micro-surgery at the hospital.

On Wednesday the 54-year-old was starting a prison sentence after a judge heard how he launched his evil tirade of abuse and missiles as Polish national Iwona Jerman was watering her garden in Bruce Walk, Windsor.

Hemmingham, of Court Farm Close, Slough, stood in the dock at Reading Crown Court sporting dreadlocked hair down to his buttocks and when asked to confirm his name and nationality by the court clerk, replied enthusiastically: "I’m English.”

Prosecutor Sandra Beck said: "This dates back to July 16 2018 at 10am. Ms Jerman was watering a tree when she was spoken too concerning the use of her hosepipe. She could not understand what the man was saying to her.

“The defendant then shouted ‘go back to your country you b**ch.’ She clearly has a Polish accent and he made a gesture towards her as he approached the boundary of her property.

“He started to pick up stones and then threw them at her with force and struck her left eyeball."

Ms Jerman had to cover her face with her hands to protect herself as the defendant repeatedly shouted more racist abuse.

The victim - who moved from Australia to Britain in 2011 - took photos of the defendant with her phone following the assault.

She attended the eye unit at King Edward VII Hospital with a temporary loss of vision and now has floating logs in her vision which affect her work in the operating theatre at the eye unit at the hospital's eye unit.

Judge Angela Morris heard that Hemmingham’s had nine previous convictions for 17 offences.

He was sentenced to 27 months imprisonment after being convicted of causing racially/religiously aggravated bodily harm.