Michelin wants its windows back
Friday 12 November 2010
The tyre-maker Michelin has issued an amnesty which it hopes will lead to the return of three striking stained glass windows which once graced the Michelin House building in London.
The windows were removed at the beginning of the Second World War in 1939 and transported to Michelin's UK factory in Stoke-on-Trent for safekeeping but they were found to be missing during an audit in 1948. Now, Michelin is hoping that the windows can be recovered in time for the centenary of the opening of Michelin House, which falls next year.
There were, apparently, rumours of sightings of the windows in the 1960s but so far no part of them has turned up. It is thought unlikely that the individual panes making up each window have been reused separately in another context as the large single image of Bibendum which each window depicts would have been lost in the process. Bibendum, or the Michelin Man as he is more commonly known in Britain, is one of the world's most famous and enduring corporate symbols, so the windows may have ended up in the hands of a wealthy collector. There is a huge market for Bibendum-related items; one large private collection was recently auctioned off for some EUR 200,000, although the large windows from Michelin House would probably be unsaleable.
With the passage of time and the issuing of the Michelin amnesty, the feeling is that it may now be time for those who know what happened to the windows to unburden themselves, allowing the long-running mystery to be solved.
Michelin House was used by Michelin until 1985; it was subsequently redeveloped and is now partly occupied by Sir Terence Conran's famous Bibendum restaurant. The original windows were carefully copied, so visitors to the restored building can still enjoy the unusual designs, which can be seen here.
Michelin has also set up a confidential hotline for anyone who wants to provide information about the whereabouts of the windows: 01782 402118.
Life & Style blogs
Versace haute couture review: Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created
The face of fertility: why do men find women who are near ovulation more attractive?
What supermodels really think about posing in the nude
People all over the world are getting semicolon tattoos to draw attention to mental health
Minecraft: Story Mode trailer revealed with cast of stars
More Britons believe that multiculturalism makes the country worse - not better, says poll
Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
Osborne to cap family benefits at £23,000 – announced ahead of his post-election Budget
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
Forget little green men – aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert
Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture
- 1 Humans of New York image of crying gay teen receives best response from Ellen DeGeneres
- 2 People all over the world are getting semicolon tattoos to draw attention to mental health
- 3 Greek debt crisis: Yanis Varoufakis's funniest (and most memorable) quotes
- 4 The biggest first date turnoff has been revealed
- 5 Swedish minister gives strongest case yet on why EU should stop turning away asylum seekers
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Working with a set process to achieve profitab...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company provides a number ...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Facilities Coordinator is required to join a...
£35000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A dynamic, customer oriented Pr...