THE identity of a mystery “guerrilla” tree sculptor has been revealed after the appearance of a series of intricate wood carvings in a wooded area left a town stumped.

Almost two months after the carvings were first spotted by dog walkers off Abbey Road, near Mother Shipton’s Cave, in Knaresborough, North Yorkshire, the town’s civic society said it believed the anonymous sculptures were the work of a Banksystyle guerrilla artist.

Althea Farmer, chairwoman of the Knaresborough Civic Society, said they wanted to thank the elusive artist for creating the carvings – a kingfisher, a fantasy tree creature and a dragon – which are up to 20ft high.

She said the artist had provided a new tourist attraction beside the River Nidd.

Mrs Farmer, a former mayor of the town, said: “We are very interested in finding out who it is, but we quite like the fact that nobody knows as it gives it a mystery like the Banksy drawings.

“They are very talented, so we would like them to come forward.

No one has come forward and revealed who it was and it’s quite a mystery.”

However, it emerged yesterday that chainsaw sculptor Tommy Craggs, of Consett, County Durham, had been commissioned by the landowner to work on the creations for two weeks in December.

Mr Craggs, 47, who has also created sculptures at Fir Tree, near Crook, in County Durham, and Barnes Park, in Sunderland, said he was surprised to discover he had become the centre of a mystery and that he had simply forgotten to sign the artworks.

He said: “I was shocked to find myself described as like Banksy because many people must have seen me doing them – it’s noisy work and one of the sculptures took me six days.”

He said he enjoyed art classes while at St Bede’s School, in Lanchester but worked as a tree feller until 2006, when he tried chainsaw sculpting after turning out wooden garden ornaments.

He said: “At first my wife thought I was crazy, that I was wasting money buying the equipment, but she has totally changed her mind now.

“I only had two jobs on before Christmas, so it was quite worrying, but now work is picking up and I hope this publicity will help.”