A mortgage company is paying radio presenter Bill Heine so it can use Oxford's famous shark landmark in a newspaper advertising campaign.

Internet business Freeserve has started to offer financial advice and is using a picture of the shark sculpture, in New High Street, Headington, with the slogan "Freedom to find the mortgage that's right for you".

BBC Radio Oxford presenter Mr Heine, pictured sprucing up the shark, said advertising agency M&C Saatchi had asked him for permission to use a picture of his house, where the shark pokes through the roof.

He said: "I have the intellectual rights of the image and by law I'm entitled to payment.

"It's nothing new though. I once had a package from the cultural attache in Kabul, containing pictures of the shark in the Chinese Daily Worker, so it's been around the world."

The shark caused controversy in 1986, when Mr Heine installed it in the roof of his house.

A battle with Oxford City Council ended when former Environment Secretary Michael Heseltine agreed to allow the sculpture to stay.

A spokesman for M&C Saatchi said the shark reflected the mortgages on offer at Freeserve.

He said: "It's also someone's home, and one that people are aware of, so it's a real and pertinent example relevant to anyone looking for a house."