The 10-metre-tall raging bull from the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games will remain in Birmingham city center until the end of September, the city council has announced, as the public campaigns for a permanent home.
Since it was on display in Centenary Square last week, people have flocked to see it, and more than 8,000 have signed a petition calling for it to stay after its creators said it would be dismantled after the Games.
Ian Ward, Birmingham City Council leader, said: “We consider this to be one of the top attractions in the city, and seeing residents and visitors enjoying the bull that is in town this week was brilliant and magnified the need to keep the bull for longer.”
Talks are underway to determine where the bull could be permanently housed, but Games organizers said it should find a place indoors.
“We’re happy he’s staying for a while and that also gives us some time to look at options for staying longer,” said Martin Green, games chief creative officer.
“Eventually it will have to be kept indoors as it needs a fair amount of maintenance so I’m sure we’ll get some great suggestions and we’ll go down every avenue we can.”
Among the crowd admiring the bull this week was 70-year-old Barry Carter from Kingstanding.
“I’ve lived in Birmingham all my life and it’s fantastic to see something like that. I think it’s great for the city,” he said. “It’s such an iconic piece. It should be preserved somehow, but whether it’s feasible or not I don’t know. It was so impressive at the opening ceremony.”
He suggested the conference venue and landmark Millennium Point in Birmingham as a potential home for the bull where he could be kept indoors.
Other suggestions include the New Street train station, the Birmingham museum or the Bullring shopping centre, already guarded by Laurence Broderick’s bronze sculpture of a bull.
Helen Grindley, 46, had stopped to look at the bull after she finished working in the city center. “I don’t think they should delete it, I think they should keep it. I love it and could become a major tourist attraction for Birmingham,” she said.
“Seeing it in real life is very different, it’s absolutely huge. I don’t know where they could keep it, but I hope they can find it somewhere.”
It took more than 50 people five months to build the bull, which is largely made of aluminum and must be transported with a 17-ton forklift.
During the opening ceremony, it was dragged into the stadium heavily armored on chains by women who represented the female chain makers of the industrial revolution.
The bull was widely hailed as the highlight of the show, although organizers had to apologize after using the bull to display the names of the victims of the 1974 Birmingham pub bombings without their family’s permission or without permission. explanation of the gesture to the audience in the commentary.
The Justice For the 21 campaign group said it was “a shame that no one bothered to inform us or explain to the public whose names are”, adding that it was “very touching for us, but the most was missed”.