Game of Thrones' Dark Hedges trees saved from the axe after council vote

The Dark Hedges were used as a filming destination for the King's Road in Game of Thrones. Credit: PA

Only one tree will be axed from a Northern Ireland beauty spot that featured in the hit-fantasy drama Game of Thrones.

Up to 11 trees in The Dark Hedges were at risk of being chopped down after a report found they were not in good health.

But the Causeway Coast and Glens Council confirmed to ITV News on Wednesday that its planning committee had "resolved to agree to the felling of 1 Tree Preservation Order (TPO) tree".

The tunnel of beech trees near Armoy, County Antrim has become popular with tourists after featuring in the King's Road during the series.

Storms in recent years have knocked down a number of trees. Credit: PA

But the report, commissioned by the Department of Infrastructure and experts at Tree Safety, found many of the trees are in a poor state and one is dead.

The council voted on Wednesday night to cut down just one of the trees.

Originally around 150 trees were planted to line the Bregagh Road to Gracehill House which was built around 1775. Currently about 80 remain.

Campaigners say the area has been abandoned by authorities despite it bringing in tourists.

Several of the trees have already been brought down by strong winds during storms in recent years.

Speaking to the Belfast Telegraph before the vote had taken place, member of the Dark Hedges Preservation Trust and DUP Councillor Mervyn Storey, said: "I concur with the findings and concerns. It’s something we need to be conscious of.

“There was no money put in to do something like an aggressive tree planting scheme, but my feeling is it’s far too late for that."

Bob McCallion, from the Save the Dark Hedges campaign group has called for more support to help protect the attraction.

He accused the authorities of failing to take responsibility for the area, claiming it had been abandoned.

“Because of the amount of people who stand under these trees, there is no way the council can reject these findings,” Mr McCallion said.

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