Ealing Christmas Tree

Designer: Ashley
Location: Ealing, London
Completion: 2013

Situated outside Ealing Town Hall as part of their Christmas celebrations and with a focus on recycling, this six metre tall tree was decorated with 900 recycled plastic bottles.

In order for the structure to be as subtle as possible, it was formed from a series of laser cut, flat steel hoops, supported on a series of small steel square sections that cantilevered out from the centre to give the appearance of floating branches.

The structure had to be both easily assembled and dismantled on site from pre-fabricated parts without welding or lifting equipment. To facilitate this, the central trunk was split into small sections and each level of braches was bolted to it to form the tree shape. The branches were vertically spaced using steel tubes that were just large enough to slot over the trunk so that they could double as splice elements to connect the various sections of trunk.

Lastly, each bottle had its cap removed, its top poked through pre-cut holes in the steel hoops and its cap screwed back on the projecting section to hold it in place.