PLANS FOR a Game of Thrones studio tour have been given the official green light by councillors in Northern Ireland.
Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council have granted permission for work on the attraction to begin at the Linen Mill Studios near Banbridge.
The attraction looks set to provide a major boost to the local economy.
As many as 200 new jobs could be created while the tour could provide an annual £400m boost in tourism revenue.
Andrew Webb, the managing director at Linen Mill Studios, expressed his delight at getting the go-ahead for the first Game of Thrones studio tour in the world.
"The authenticity of the Game of Thrones studio tour at Linen Mill Studios is the essential connection with the show, which has been such a part of the Banbridge area for so many years," he said.
"This is an ambitious project which will provide a significant boost to the local and regional economy. It is hoped that the creation of local employment opportunities will act as a catalyst for the economy at this time."
Linen Mill Studios began collaborating with the producers of the hit television seriesback in 2008, following the closure of the original mill.
The original facility had previously operated on the site since 1832.
The studio tour is being developed under licence with Warner Brothers Consumer Products.
A unique, interactive experience, the tour will bring fans face-to-face with original props, weapons and set pieces from the worlds of Westeros and Esteros.
According to Tourism NI, some 350,000 people visit Northern Ireland every year because of the popularity of Game of Thrones.
That represents the equivalent of one in six leisure visitors and amounts to a cash injection of around £50m each year.
It’s one of several popular attractions in Northern Ireland along with Ballintoy harbour and the iconic Dark Hedges.