The Beatles' zebra crossing protected
The zebra crossing on featured on the cover of The Beatles' 'Abbey Road' album has been given Grade II listed status by a London council
The zebra crossing on featured on the cover of The Beatles' 'Abbey Road' album has been given listed status.
The black and white painted strip of road in North London was immortalised when the group were photographed walking across it one after another on the cover of the band's 1969 album.
It is the first time a pedestrian crossing, or similar piece of everyday road has been given a Grade II listing, which means it is protected from being altered or moved unless approved by the local planning authority - usually with consultation from central government's English Heritage agency.
Sir Paul McCartney - one of the two surviving members of the group - said: "It's been a great year for me and a great year for the Beatles and hearing that the Abbey Road crossing is to be preserved is the icing on the cake."
The crossing was actually moved for traffic management reasons over 30 years ago, and has also been repainted in accordance with changing traffic systems.
The crossing and the nearby Abbey Road studio - already a listed building - where the Beatles recorded much of their material, remain a popular spot for tourists and fans of the band with many seeking to recreate the album cover on a daily basis.
John Penrose, Minister for Tourism and Heritage, said: "This London zebra crossing is no castle or cathedral but, thanks to The Beatles, and a 10-minute photo-shoot one August morning in 1969, it has just as strong a claim as any to be seen as part of our heritage."
The photograph used on the album cover was taken by Ian Macmillan.