House with White Shark sticking out its roof to become a protected tourist spot

By on December 19, 2017
House with White Shark sticking out its roof to become a protected tourist spot

House with White Shark sticking out its roof to become a protected tourist spot

House with a 25ft Great White Shark sticking out of the roof is due to become listed in a campaign by the very council that ordered it to be demolished 28 years ago.

The terraced home became Oxford’s quirkiest tourist attraction when its owner, local journalist and broadcaster Bill Heine, had the fibreglass beast installed in 1986.

City councillors hated it and refused retrospective planning permission in 1990 but Bill appealed to the then secretary of state for the environment Michael Heseltine, who ruled in his favour two years later.

Now Oxford council is to consider making it a listed building so it’s preserved for future generations to admire.

The astonishing sight, in the city’s Headington area, was created by sculptor John Buckley as a protest against the American bombing of Libya.

Headington councillor Ruth Wilkinson said: “I was shocked to find out that the shark had not been listed to protect it.

“In just ten minutes on a Sunday morning I saw seven different people taking photos of it and posing for selfies. It even has its own Wikipedia entry.

“Mention Headington here or abroad and the one thing people have heard of is the shark.”

An application for it to be listed on the Oxford Heritage Asset Register will now go to the city council, with a decision expected by council heritage officers in the summer.

Cllr Wilkinson said: “This may prove interesting as the shark initially sparked controversy in the council chamber.”

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