Earlier today I sent you a mail about a candy-striped house in Kensington. Researching that led me to this rather strange oddity:- an Oxford house with a shark in it’s roof:
Of course, it is one thing to put a 25 foot (7.62m), 4 hundredweight (203kg) fibreglass shark in the roof of your Victorian home, but quite another thing to be able to keep it there in the face of an English council, as Bill Heine did on Saturday 9 August 1986 (it is still there today).
Bill Heine is an American who studied law at Balliol College, Oxford. At the time of the shark art installation he was running 2 cinemas in Oxford & already had form in upsetting the local council with large fibreglass sculptures.
There used to be a cinema opposite the house at 2 New High Street called the “Moulin Rouge”. It had been named by a previous owner. That person had wanted to put up a Windmill, that would actually turn. However, he had made a mistake:- he asked the council for permission first. The council turned him down, on the basis that “it was misleading, as there were no can-can dancers”.
Bill Heine bought the Moulin Rouge in 1980. He had the perfect idea as to how to promote it. And he would not make the same mistake as the previous owner...