A FLAG has been tied to a tree on one of the area's best-known green spaces, sparking rumours that the phantom flag-flyer of last year has returned.

Last November the Guardian reported on dozens of flags from the nearby Wanstead Golf Club had been tied to branches at the top of oak trees on The Green, at the southern end of Wanstead High Street.

Now, after an absence of several months over the winter, the mystery flag fanatic seems to have returned and has tied a single St George's Cross to one of the large trees.

As yet it is unknown whether all the flags are the work of a single individual or whether more than one person could be responsible.

Resident Andrew Turner, of St Alban's Road in South Woodford, alerted the Guardian to the first batch last November.

He said: “It started in July with those golf flags that started appearing up there.

“They all disappeared some time back last November, during that first really heavy night of snow, which was a feat in itself.

“Yesterday I walked passed the green and there was nothing. But this morning there was one flag up in the tree, a St George's Cross, the English flag.

“And it's not like one of the golf flags that were up there last year, this is huge.

“It's like the first cuckoo of the year. If you see the first cuckoo, you ring the Times; if you see the first flag, you ring the Wanstead and Woodford Guardian.

“I don't want people to think I'm responsible, I'm just an innocent bystander!”

Have you seen anyone putting the flags in the trees? Or are you the phantom flag-flyer?

Call James Ranger on 01992 563 123 or email jranger@london.newsquest.co.uk.