The Gruffalo’s Hidden Habitat

Telling the important story of the vanishing woods through vanishing ads


Yorkshire Tea pledged to plant 1 million trees over 5 years, in partnership with the Woodland Trust, to make them a carbon neutral business by 2018. Our task was to reverse the low awareness of this initiative and boost ethical perceptions of Yorkshire Tea. To tell the (sadly, non-fictional) story of “The Vanishing Wood” the fact that if action isn’t taken now, our woodlands will disappear.

The Idea

So we made the Gruffalo’s habitat disappear in our ads. Where parents and children needed to colour it back in to stop the woods from vanishing. This featured in print media using ads bought in mono across quality titles. With partner agencies we built an interactive unit for digital media featuring a range of paint colours and brush sizes, with a social media sharing function.


We smashed our targets, raising awareness of our Woodland Trust Partnership by 50% year on year. We also enhanced perceptions of the brand with 25% more people seeing Yorkshire Tea as ethical. We had a flurry of images posted and shared of parents and kids who’d coloured in the vanishing wood. Together we took a monster step on the journey to planting a million trees.