Walking in a woolly wonderland in Forest Gate

The wool covered tree in Woodgrange Road

The wool covered tree in Woodgrange Road - Credit: Archant

Decorating a tree for Christmas has taken on a whole new meaning in Forest Gate.

The tree decorated by members of Wool E7

The tree decorated by members of Wool E7 - Credit: Archant

A secretive group of knitting and crochet fans have picked up their needles and plenty of wool to give a tree at the junction of Woodgrange Road and Sebert Road a new winter coat.

Wool E7 is comprised of around 20 adult members from the Forest Gate area, from young mums who bring their babies to sessions, to retired people who have been knitting all their lives.

“We started work on it around the end of October,” explained one of the members, who did not wish to be identified.

“When we put it up, someone that lives nearby came out with tea and cakes for us.”

Wool E7 was set up a year ago and has “six or seven” core members, with others joining in when they can.

The group, which is currently comprised exclusively of women, are very secretive, with the focus on the community rather than individual members.

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She added: “When we did the one in the summer, there was no fly-tipping around the tree, but as soon as it went away there was rubbish dumped there.

“There were parents telling their children to wait at the woolly tree, and it became a sort of landmark.”

“We want to brighten up the area of Forest Gate and make it somewhere people can be proud of.”

The tree’s jacket will remain in place for “as long as it still looks good”, but if you can’t see it before it goes, there are plans for more ‘yarn-bombing’ in the future.

In keeping with the community ethos of Wool E7’s work, the borough’s knitters are invited to contribute to the decoration.

“If anyone wants to add anything they’ve knitted to the tree, they can - but it has to be made of wool,” the knitter explained.

To keep up to date with the group’s projects, follow @WoolE7 on Twitter - or you could even follow the borough’s most iconic tree at @FGTree7

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