– A giant mechanical bull that turned heads at the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in the English city of Birmingham will stay on show after a campaign against it being dismantled, the city council announced on Friday.
A petition to save the 10-metre tall structure attracted nearly 10,000 signatures and it will now adorn Birmingham’s Centenary Square until the end of September for public viewing before being moved indoors.
“We are delighted with the response the Bull has had from the Opening Ceremony which reflects our history,” said Ian Ward, leader of Birmingham City Council.
The artwork was pulled onto stage at the city’s Alexander Stadium by 50 women representing female chain-makers during the Industrial Revolution who made chains used in the slave trade.
The city’s association with the bull stems from the Bull Ring, a market area of Birmingham in the Middle Ages onwards where bulls were once held before slaughter. The city’s biggest shopping centre is the Bullring.
Made of mostly aluminium, it took five months and more than 50 people to build the bull, which has become a major tourist attraction since the Games began.
“The diverse history of Birmingham is one of the reasons we were successful in our bid for the 2022 Commonwealth Games and the way residents and visitors have embraced the Bull shows how important this is,” added Ward.
The Games close on Monday.