Residents are knitting up a plan of attack in a bid for next week’s Olympic torch relay not to be literally overshadowed by the looming black tower in Colliers Wood.

Ruth Herring, a South Thames College lecturer and self-confessed “yarnaholic”, wants to brighten up the area by “yarn bombing” the streets for when the eyes of the nation are watching the Olympic flame being carried past the looming black tower.

The tower, owned by Criterion Capital, has been empty for years and shows no signs of being redeveloped, much to the irritation of residents.

Ms Herring said she and 60 volunteers were determined to knit as many decorative items as possible and use them to line the streets for Monday’s torch parade.

She said: “Our area is about more than an ugly black tower and I don’t want visitors to Colliers Wood to come away with a false impression of what our area is like.

“It is a really community-led area with so many dedicated people who are always doing fantastic things and it is so important that we are able to show that.”

The so-called “yarn bombing”, a form of textile graffiti in which a public area is covered by items of knitwear, is being undertaken by some 60 volunteers who are furiously knitting away in preparation for the big event.

Ms Herring said: “I have rallied knitters from eight to 80, so it is very inclusive – one man is nursing a broken arm, but he’s still determined to get on his knitting machine to do his bit.”

Will you be watching the Olympic parade as it passes through Merton? Leave a comment below, tweet @WimbledonNews or email:

Olympic coverage

Click here for Olympic news, views and information

Click here to follow our Olympic coverage on Twitter

Click here to follow our Olympic coverage on Facebook

Click here to for Olympic traffic news on Twitter