The mural of a Rat holding a machine gun by Banksy is said to be one of his largest works in Britain. (Photo: ALAMY)

The mural, a 30-foot tall painting of a rat holding a machine gun, will disappear after the businessman bought the former Liverpool pub it adorns and promised to paint over it.

The Grade 2 listed Georgian property was adorned by artwork from the Bristol-born graffiti giant Banksy, around the time of Liverpool’s Biennial art festival in 2004.

But after purchasing the artwork at auction on Thursday for £114,000, property developer Billy Palmer, 44, admitted he has no interest in preserving the painting, despite protests from art lovers.

“I’m not a fan of modern art, I can’t say I know much about it really,” he said after the auction at Liverpool’s Marriott Hotel.

“All I was concerned about was getting this great building for a good price, I’m going to turn it into luxury flats.


Andrew Hough