A much-loved horse chestnut tree used by a hospice in an annual remembrance ceremony fell and destroyed a car in stormy weather.

Staff North London Hospice, based in Woodside Avenue, Barnet, were devastated when heavy rain and thunderstorms brought the tree down on Sunday, October 23.

The tree was described as a “focal point” of a Light Up a Life remembrance event, in which hundreds of lights are lit each November to pay tribute to their loved ones.

Some people online said their “proudest moments” were during the lighting service.

Times Series: A car was crushed after a tree was knocked downA car was crushed after a tree was knocked down (Image: North London Hospice)

The hospice said: “Fortunately nobody was injured, although a car was damaged and we have had an outpouring of emotion on social media at the loss of the tree.”

Images show a car parked near the hospice surrounded by debris.

One person, Johanna Elkington, said: “The light up a light services was so special to my family as we have been going for 22 years (apart from lockdown) for my grandad. It was so magical when the tree was lit up and we got to think at the point of our loved ones.”

Times Series: The tree pictured in a previous eventThe tree pictured in a previous event (Image: North London Hospice)

Tracey Scanlon, who said she has been attending for 18 years, says she was “saddened" to see the "beautiful" tree has fallen.

The road was cleared on the Monday thanks to the work of Stafford Frank Gardens staff who “worked tirelessly” to remove the timber.

According to the hospice, parts of the tree might be used in some sculptures or as keepsakes to remember its history.

The Light Up a Life event is still scheduled for November 27 this year as the hospice seeks an alternative plan to replace the tree.

To RSVP to the event, visit: https://northlondonhospice.org/events/lual/