KNITTING fans are furious after an anonymous complaint led to popular public artwork being taken down.

Trees in Harwich were wrapped in woolly squares as part of a colourful project for last year’s Festival of the Arts.

They were taken down over winter and put back up for this year’s festival.

But a complaint about the knitting being left on the 13 trees on the corner of George Street has led to the artwork being removed.

An angry letter was then posted on a lamppost nearby hitting out at the complaint.

It said: “I had hoped to have the knitting on these trees for the entire summer season.

“Unfortunately a member of the public, concerned with the welfare of the trees, made a complaint.”

A resident spotted the letter and posted it on Facebook which prompted dozens of angry replies.

Rose Ullyett said: “On my way home and saw this displayed on a lamppost near to where the knitted trees were, off George Street.

“I say ‘were’ because someone has complained. Good grief. What on earth upset you to feel you had to complain.

“To the lady who organised this, thank you very much for brightening up a corner of Harwich. It was much appreciated.”

Jeanette Quantrill said: “This so typical that one complaint is upheld to the detriment of so many others who have enjoyed this project.

“My 84-year-old mother, Brenda Case, knitted an entire tree there and she will be upset to know it’s been removed - as are all her family.”

Other angry residents on Facebook have suggested they pick up their knitting needles and create more woolly knitwear for trees in response and raise money for charity at the same time.

Peter Davis, artistic director of the Harwich Festival of the Arts, said the complaint highlighted a code of practice for the art work, known as yarn bombing or guerilla knitting.

“The knitted trees were public art for last year’s festival,” he said.

“We put them back up again for this year’s festival - the public art is something we would like to accumulate over the years.

“They had been up for three weeks and we got a complaint from a member of the public who referred us to the Woodland Trust, which has a code of practice for yarn bombing.

“It said they should only be up for a week or two so we took the decision to take them down.”

It is hoped the knitting will be put back up for next year’s festival.