Court proceedings to determine the future of a tree took an unexpected twist when a resident made a last-minute bid to save it from the chainsaw.

The plane tree, in Oakfield Road, Stroud Green, was to be the subject of a court hearing today between Haringey Council and Haringey Tree Protectors (HTP) and persons unknown as the council tried to gain possession of the tree so it can be cut down.

Insurance company Allianz claims the tree is causing subsidence to a nearby house while the council says it risks an insurance claim of more than £400,000 if it is not felled.


But at the last minute it emerged that a resident in Oakfield Road, working separately from HTP, had put in an injunction against the tree being felled.

Haringey Council's barrister Stephen Evans told the court that no notification had been given to the council about the claim, which was lodged at 2.45am this morning (Wednesday, March 15).

He added that the injunction was served by the same lawyers representing HTP.

HTP's barrister, Paul Powlesland, said: "This is seen as separate. One is using the law as a sword and this is using it as a shield."

Because the injunction was served with no notice, the resident and their lawyer were to serve a full set of documents to Haringey Council by 12pm today.

Today's original hearing, adjourned from December, was made after Haringey Council took environmental group Haringey Tree Protectors to court in December.

December's injunction was against persons unknown and Haringey Tree Protectors protesting at the tree.

Haringey Council was still seeking this, even though they physically "took possession" on Sunday amid disputed claims that protesters had been preparing to occupy the tree with climbing ropes.

HTP's lawyer wasn’t going to challenge it as the council has legal possession.

If the council possesses the tree, it can remove it, but the resident's new injunction stops it doing that.

The case was originally adjourned until 1.30pm today but District Judge Alastair Redpath-Stephens has now adjourned the case until 2pm tomorrow (Thursday).