Over 5,000 multi-coloured lights are lighting up the riverside on the UKâ€™s tallest Christmas tree. At well over 80ft the Scottish-grown Sitka spruce stands proudly in the Pool of London at More London, the 13-acre riverside development near Tower Bridge
The tree, over 50 years old and weighing over 6 tonnes, comes from a sustainable forest at Loch Katrine in Perthshire. Prior to its felling in late November, a special road had to be built deep into the forest right up to the tree in order to allow it to be transported.
The tree's long 3-day journey from the curving, wooded roads around Loch Katrine, to the heart of busy London took place on a large flat bed articulated lorry under police escort. The tree finally arrived at its berth next to the The Scoop by City Hall on Saturday 6 December.
The tree was unloaded by a specialist team and erected using a 40-ton hydraulic crane on to a specially designed supporting base and foundations, which took two days to construct.
Mark Evans, estates director at More London, said: "This is our first proper Christmas at More London since the estate was launched in September and we wanted to celebrate this occasion with something really special that our occupiers – the GLA, Ernst & Young, Hewitt, Bacon & Woodrow and CDC – their clients and staff, the local community and public, can all enjoy. This huge Christmas tree is just one of many planned public events at More London, including a series of plays, music festivals, public art and performances"
To further aid the Christmas celebrations at More London, there will be carol singing by the tree between 1-3pm on Friday 19 December. Children from a local Southwark school, St Olave's & St Saviour's, will also be singing at the site on 16 December (12.30-1pm and 1.30-2pm).
The tree will remain on the site until Twelfth Night, 6 January 2004. After the tree comes down it will be mulched and recycled for use in growing the next generation of Christmas trees.