Hundreds of people are protesting the decision to cut down a sycamore tree in Hackney that could be 120 years old.

Emma Pavans de Ceccatty, who is leading a campaign to save the tree, said the people of Bayston Road would “not go lying down”.

The tree, which Emma estimates is between 80 and 120 years old, is located next to a council house in Bayston Road.

READ MORE: Haringey Council claims not felling tree will cost £1m

According to Hackney Council, the tree’s roots are damaging the building and it is decaying in a way that will lead to safety concerns in the future.

Emma said that she had not seen the evidence to support the idea that the tree was a risk to the neighbouring property.

She said she wanted more evidence that the tree is an issue.

Emma dubbed the move to fell the tree "overenthusiastic".

She added: “At this point, the tree has been there for possibly 100 years and we have a duty to do better.

“If this [decision] has been taken for cost saving reasons then we need to rethink that because the implications for biodiversity are too important."

Hackney Gazette: Emma's petition has garnered almost 450 signaturesEmma's petition has garnered almost 450 signatures (Image: Emma Pavans de Ceccatty)
Emma added that she felt the issue affected boroughs outside of Hackney.

She said: "There should be a community engagement on these decisions because it’s a real loss when it happens and people are angry.

"We’re not going silently."

Cllr Caroline Woodley, Hackney cabinet member for families, parks and leisure, said: "We maintain a significant number of mature trees across the borough, which offer a vital cooling effect in mitigation of hot weather as well as adding beauty, interest and ecological value to our streets and green spaces.

“In some cases, however, trees that are planted close to housing or that have self-seeded in inappropriate locations need to be moved, managed or felled.

“On these occasions our arboricultural officers have to make a judgement on the most appropriate course of action.

“I know that a decision to fell can be really disappointing when it means the loss of a mature tree and it's right that great care should be taken over these decisions.

"In this case, I'm advised that the tree is decaying and its roots are causing damage to one of our council homes. This decay will lead to serious safety concerns in the coming year."

Hackney Gazette: The sycamore is estimated to be between 80 and 120 years oldThe sycamore is estimated to be between 80 and 120 years old (Image: Emma Pavans de Ceccatty)

Emma’s petition has now garnered almost 450 signatures.

She added: “We’re just trying to find a way forward that works and that’s fair – from my perspective I’m trying to give a fair voice to this tree that wouldn’t have gotten it [otherwise].”