The London Borough of Waltham Forest is a London borough in north east London, England. The local authority is Waltham Forest London Borough Council. It covers a total area of approximately 14.99 square miles. The borough is situated between Epping Forest and Essex towards the north, Redbridge to the east, Newham and Hackney to the south, and Haringey and Enfield in the west, where the River Lea and Lea Valley and the surrounding parkland forms a green corridor separating north and east London. Major districts are Leyton and Leytonstone in the south, Walthamstow at the centre, and Chingford in the north.
In accordance with population estimates from the middle of 2014, Waltham Forest is a borough with a permanent population of about 268020 people. The north and south of the borough, split by the North Circular Road, contrast markedly in terms of ethnicity and socio-economic indicators, with built-up urban districts towards the south having inner-city characteristics, and more affluent residential development to the north with open spaces, parks, and playing fields.
Historically referred to as the seat of the Arts and Crafts Movement under the stewardship of William Morris, Waltham Forest has continued to support several modern artists and art groups. The annual E17 Art Trail, which contains open studios, exhibitions and events, is the biggest art occasion within the borough, and there is certainly now a equivalent occasion in Leytonstone. Waltham Forest was on the list of six London boroughs that hosted the 2012 Summer Olympics.