Rock singer Cher has finally got approval for the huge wall surrounding her Malibu, California, home.

Building officials in the American state swooped on the MERMAIDS actress back in 1999 after she erected a three-metre (10-foot) wall around her property. Regulations stipulate walls in the Malibu area should not exceed two metres (seven feet).

Ordered to bring the wall into line, Cher claimed it was vital to her safety as it protected her from stalkers.

Officials were unimpressed, despite the singer's previous brushes with devoted fans, so she changed tack, claiming the wall was in fact vital to the safety of motorists in the Malibu area, protecting them as it did from the errant tennis balls flying onto the Pacific Coast Highway that a smaller edifice would fail to deflect.

Once again her plea went unheard and Cher was forced to take the case to the California Appeals Court, which thankfully for the BELIEVE star, ruled in favour of the wall.

In exchange, the singer will have to donate $125,000 (GBP80,000) to schools in the area.

28/08/2003 17:20