Secret Yarnbombers decorate Thirsk for Tour de Yorkshire

The town was decorated by anonymous 'Yarnbombers' under the cover of darkness Credit: ITV News

Yarnbombing street artists are celebrating this year's Tour de Yorkshire cycle race by decorating a town under the cover of darkness with hundreds of woollen creations.

Around 300 people - aged between one and 97 - have been involved in thecommunity effort to cover Thirsk, in North Yorkshire, with a range of knitted and crocheted designs.

The market town woke up to the decorations on this morning after 50 of the Thirsk Yarnbombers spent the night - dressed head-to-toe in black - putting the woolly items on display along the race route.

Members of the group used around 750 balls of wool to make hundreds of metres of bunting; decorate trees, bollards, benches and fences; knit life-size people and animals; and make specially crafted door hangers for each for the town's 150 shops.

Credit: ITV News

The organisers said people from around the world had contributed knitting and crochet after hearing about the project."We set up a Facebook site and it just grew. In about a fortnight we had 150 members.

"Churches, the WI, schools, childminders and old people's homes have all got involved. Our youngest is one and the oldest is 97. We've had people with dementia, people with disabilities and people who suffer quite badly from depression. It's just lifted people.

The three-day Tour de Yorkshire cycling event will pass through Thirsk during

Its final stage from Middlesbrough to Scarborough on Sunday May 1.

It begins on Friday with a 184-kilometre route from Beverley to Settle and the second stage on Saturday will see cyclists tackling a 135km route from Otley to Doncaster.