Two men in court over Sycamore Gap tree felling

Police officers look at the tree at Sycamore Gap Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

Two men will appear in court charged with causing criminal damage after the felling of the famous Sycamore Gap tree.

Daniel Graham, 38, of Milbeck Stables, Carlisle, and Adam Carruthers, 31, also from the Carlisle area of Cumbria, will face Newcastle Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday afternoon.

The much-photographed tree, which stood next to Hadrian’s Wall in Northumberland for 200 years, was chopped down in September last year, causing national outrage.

Last month the Crown Prosecution Service announced the two men, from the Carlisle area, were being charged.

The criminal damage caused by felling the landmark has been valued at more than £620,000, according to court charges.

The tree was a much-loved feature of the Northumberland landscape Credit: Tom White/PA

The pair are charged with criminal damage to property of a value over £5,000, namely “without lawful excuse, damaged a sycamore tree to the value of £622,191 belonging to the National Trust”.

They face a second charge of criminal damage to property valued under £5,000, namely Hadrian’s Wall, with the damage assessed to the Unesco World Heritage Site as being £1,144.

Both offences were alleged to have been committed on 28 September last year.

Northumbria Police made a number of arrests following the felling.

A teenager and a man in his 60s were later told they would face no further action.

The National Trust, which owns the land on which the tree stood, hopes the sycamore will live on after scientists found that salvaged seeds and cuttings are showing signs of being viable for new growth.

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