A woman, who was 'distraught' after she was told to wash away her lockdown chalk project, has been allowed to keep the colourful display up until June.

Susan Lazenby, 52, started working on a wall-sized mural to thank the NHS in the first lockdown.

However, she was told to wash away the artwork by her social housing providers, so as not to “attract further graffiti in the area.”

The former teaching assistant started the mural in the first lockdown when shielding at her home in Gearing Close, Tooting, due to previous heart conditions.

But in a statement released today (March 31), Optivo, her housing providers, announced the mural could stay until June.

The announcement comes after an online petition to save the mural gained over 1000 signatures in one day.

An Optivo spokesperson said:

"We recognise and fully support our heroic NHS and their hard work, particularly over the last year.

"In the spirit of this, we agreed a chalk drawn mural to celebrate our NHS, could be erected on a wall outside our properties in Gearing Close.

"The mural has recently been the subject of complaints from local residents, who’ve asked for this to be removed, due to concerns that it could attract graffiti in the area. However, we do understand this mural and the message behind it means a lot to the local community. So, we’ve agreed the mural can continue to be displayed until Monday 21 June 2021 when lockdown restrictions are due to end.

"We’ve confirmed this with Mrs Lazenby today and she is in agreement.

"We’re aware of claims circulating on social media that we’ve issued an anti-social behaviour warning to a resident regarding this mural. This is not accurate, and we’re pleased to confirm that this is not the case."