A councillor has stepped back from the Barnet Conservatives to deal with a personal matter, according to a statement from the group.

Cllr Shimon Ryde, who represents Childs Hill, is currently listed as an independent councillor on the Barnet Council website.

It comes days after the Conservatives boosted their majority on the council by holding a seat in Edgware and gaining a seat in East Barnet in two by-elections.

Elected in 2014, Cllr Ryde has recently served as chairman of the strategic planning committee.

The Barnet Conservatives said: “Cllr Ryde has stepped back from the Conservative group to deal with a personal matter, and we hope to welcome him back to the group in the future.

“Cllr Ryde has made clear that he continues to fully support the leader and Conservative administration.”

Barnet Council is currently made up of 37 Conservative councillors, 23 Labour members, two Liberal Democrats and one independent.