TWO trees at the iconic Dark Hedges site in Co. Antrim have been brought down by winds during Storm Arwen.
The tunnel of beech trees along Bredagh Avenue near Armoy were made famous on the hit TV Game of Thrones.
The two trees were brought down in the early hours of Saturday as winds reached up to 140km/h.
Another tree lost at County Antrim’s Dark Hedges - famous from Game of Thrones - because of strong winds from Storm Arwen. Photo - Paul McCafferty. pic.twitter.com/yk7tUO2eRJ
— Barra Best (@barrabest) November 27, 2021
Images of the fallen trees were shared on the Facebook page of campaign group Save the Dark Hedges.
A tree was previously brought down by strong winds in January 2019, while others were damaged by Storm Hector in June 2018.
Storm Doris brought down a tree in February 2017, while two trees were uprooted by Storm Gertrude in January 2016.
Unfortunately one of the centuries old Beech trees at the Bregagh Road ( Dark Hedges) was a victim of last night's weather. Lots of debris on most roads this morning. Take care out there #StormArwen pic.twitter.com/naC6q61hPB
— Cllr Darryl Wilson (@DarrylUUP) November 27, 2021
A ban on traffic along part of the road has been in place since October 2017 over fears increased traffic could damages the trees' roots.
The site has been a popular tourist attraction since being used as a filming location in HBO’s phenomenally successful show, Game of Thrones.
Save the Dark Hedges campaigns for greater protection of the trees, which are believed to have been planted around 1775.
🎥 Two trees at The Dark Hedges in County Antrim - made world famous as a Games of Thrones filming location - have been brought down by #StormArwen #DarkHedges #TheKingsroad #GameofThrones #GoT pic.twitter.com/RL4dPrzG4p
— Q Radio News (@qnewsdesk) November 27, 2021
Bob McCallion from the group told BBC Northern Ireland that a specialist body is needed to manage the Dark Hedges.
He said no one is currently in overall charge of the site, describing it as a "free for all".
Around 150 trees are believed to have been planted, although less than two thirds remain.