Dec 9 (Reuters) – New Scotland Yard, the headquarters of London’s storied police force and one of the British capital’s most famous landmarks, has been sold to an Abu Dhabi investor, paving the way for its macabre but private museum to open to the public elsewhere.
The 20-storey block in central London is famous around the globe as the home of the Metropolitan Police Service and for the rotating triangular sign in front of it nicknamed “the revolving cheese” by local wits.
The Met, as the service is often called, is as well-known for its role as Britain’s leading police force as for its links with famous fictional sleuths such as Sherlock Holmes.
The sale, for 370 million pounds ($580 million), is part of a trend that has seen well-known public buildings sold in recent years to tap soaring real estate prices.
The building, which sold for 120 million pounds more than the suggested price, will be transformed into luxury flats.
The transaction paves the way for a remarkable collection of artefacts — from the ricin-filled pellet fired from an umbrella to kill Bulgarian dissident Georgi Markov on a London bridge in 1978 to cooking pots used by a serial killer to boil up his victims — to go on public display.
They had previously been housed in a private invitation-only “Black Museum” at New Scotland Yard but will now be moved to a new public museum in a location that has yet to be chosen…