A woman is shocked and distressed after her “beautiful hedge” was cut down by the council without her permission.

Chrystal Mortimer has lived in her house in Steyning Avenue, Hove, for four years and has enjoyed the space and privacy provided by her front garden.

Following damage to her front wall, Chrystal, 32, requested it be repaired by Brighton and Hove City Council, as it is a council-owned property.

However, the mum-of-three was distressed to return home one day and find that the wall and her front hedge had been “demolished”.

The bushes before they were cut backThe bushes before they were cut back (Image: Google Street View)

She said: “It took a while for them to do anything, and it was only after I threatened to get my MP involved that they sent someone out to do the work.

“Instead of fixing the wall, they decided to knock it down and cut my Virgin Media wire, which left me without internet.

“They then sent a gardener round to cut down the hedge without saying anything.

“I came back and my hedge had been demolished.”

A Virgin Media technician had to be called out to repair the cut line and Chrystal was devastated that her front garden had been ruined.

She said: “When I came back, I was in tears.

“My kids were worried about the birds that live in the hedge.

“My privacy is gone. I used to put a pool in the front garden but I can’t do that now and I wanted to put a gate up for them but that’s also not possible.

“I am completely shocked, saddened and very distressed at what I have come back to.”

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A council spokesman said: “We would like to apologise to the resident for any disruption caused.

“It is clear they have nicely maintained the garden and in hindsight our team should have kept them better informed as to what would be required to make these necessary repairs ahead of the work taking place.

“Our team did have to cut back a bush so they could repair a brick wall which had been damaged by the bush.

“This was done in a way to allow the bush to grow back and although a small part of the bush did need to be removed, this will be replaced once the work is completed.”