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 an overall area of around 14.99 square miles. The borough is positioned between Epping Forest and Essex towards the north, Redbridge to the east, Newham and Hackney towards the south, and Haringey and Enfield to the west, exactly where the River Lea and Lea Valley and the surrounding parkland forms a green corridor separating north and east London. Main 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 individuals. 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 in the south having inner-city characteristics, and more affluent residential development in the north with open spaces, parks, and playing fields.
Historically known as the seat of the Arts and Crafts Movement under the stewardship of William Morris, Waltham Forest continues to support a lot of contemporary artists and art groups. These include the North East London Independent Artists group, based at the Changing Room Gallery in Lloyd Park, the 491 Gallery in Leytonstone, and also a number of independent artists, also mostly inside the Leytonstone area. Waltham Forest was among the six London boroughs that hosted the 2012 Summer Olympics.