Pembroke: Pay up, or the shark gets it

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The Independent Online
Slapped wrists for Bill Heine, the Oxford broadcaster who hit the headlines after mounting a 25ft shark sculpture on his roof. Mr Heine faces losing his controversial home after a legal battle.

He has been involved in a lengthy wrangle with other shareholders over the Penultimate Picture Palace, an Oxford art house cinema. Mr Heine settled before the case came to court last week but has been ordered to pay pounds 38,500 in legal costs. But then came the twist, deftly applied by Justice Parker. To encourage prompt payment of the costs, he added that Mr Heine's house - shark and all - should be used as security.

JAMES HARBRIDGE, a trainee solicitor with City firm Wilde Sapte, is concentrating hard on the television coverage of Wimbledon: trying to catch a glimpse of his hero John McEnroe in the NBC commentary box. The young legal eagle has completed a biography of the tennis star to be published in December.

Mr Harbridge was still in short trousers when he started research on the book 10 years ago. Now, after a decade of interviews, including some with McEnroe's former girlfriends and school headmaster, he is glad to be shot of the project. 'It's like having too much chocolate. You get sick of it.'

INSTITUTIONAL investors in the Telegraph group have a right to be hopping mad. But they are not the only ones to have lost out after proprietor Conrad Black's price cut sent shares into free-fall. Mr Black's staff are counting their losses too, including deputy City editor Richard Northedge.

Mr Northedge was one of a number of Telegraph staffers who took up the company's generous offer to exercise some share options earlier this year. He bought either 1,000 or 2,000 shares ('I can't remember which') at 250p at the end of March. As Telegraph stock was skipping along quite happily at 550p at the time, it looked like free money all round. But with the shares slumping to 360p, the mark-up now looks decidedly weedy. Mr Northedge was philosophical about his diminished profit margin: 'I preferred the higher price to the lower price.'

DAVID CLEAVE, the young blade who set up the Colony wine bar in the City, was presiding over the opening of his new venture last night - a brasserie type thing called Cafe Poppy in Parsons Green, west London. But the build-up to the big night did not go completely to plan. One dry run turned out rather damper than expected. A water pipe burst and kitchen staff had to paddle around trying to prepare the steak frites while ankle-deep in water.

THE RAF has come over all entrepreneurial. Three months ago, demolition men began work on those funny radar beacons that look like mutant golf balls at RAF Fylingdales. Now some bright spark in the officers' mess has come up with an idea: flog bits for charity. Volunteers are now busily chopping up the white fireproof substance and selling portions for pounds 2.50.

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