A man has expressed his sadness after a tree was cut down.

Victor Seidler, of Danescroft Avenue, Hendon, was dismayed to discover a cedar of Lebanon tree close to his home was to be chopped down.

The tree, which is on private land, was not protected by a tree protection order (TPO) or in a conservation area.

But Mr Seidler believes it is more than 100 years old and that its sister tree stands in his own garden, meaning the trees have a special significance for him.

He said: “I have grown up in the shadows of the two cedars that shape the view in our garden, which is why I suppose I care so deeply about their thriving.

“I’ve known the trees and been comforted and inspired by them for all my 72 years. It will be a terrible loss.”

Though Mr Seidler hoped Barnet Council would intervene to see the tree saved, or at most cut back due to the stormy weather, the felling began on Friday and was completed by Tuesday.

He added: “Trees echoing the tree of life in Genesis and as reminders of the garden of Eden have a significant place in Jewish traditions. There is an annual celebration of trees held around the Tu BiShvat festival.

“In modern times Tu Bishvat has become an environmental awareness festival and makes it particularly relevant to the Cedar of Lebanon tree that seeks protection, love and respect.”

A Barnet Council spokesman said: “In this particular case the tree being removed is privately owned, is not included in a TPO, nor is it located in a conservation area.

“In cases such as this, we have no control over its treatment and no power to prevent work being undertaken, with no formal consent or notification required prior to undertaking works.

“We received no requests to include the tree in a TPO prior to the tree being partially dismantled.”