‘Game of Thrones’ Iconic Trees in Northern Ireland Slowly DisappearingBy Shunie Pearl C. Dela Cruz, UniversityHerald Reporter
Another tree has fallen in the 'Game of Thrones' Dark Hedges location in Northern Ireland. Known as the Dark Hedges in the movie throughout the world, this tunnel of trees is also called the Kingsroad. According to a report of Irish News, the tree fell onto the Bregagh Road last Tuesday night.
This is the third reported incident of damage in the same spot. Thus, special protection for the said place has been activated since it is also a famous tourist attraction. The first reported incident was the uprooted number of trees during the onslaught of Storm Gertrude in January this year. Second was the road markings unintentionally painted on the famous road and was removed the next day.
The recent incident has concerned the North Antrim assembly member Mervyn Storey. As the chairman of the Dark Hedges Preservation Trust, Storey admitted the fact that due to age and weather conditions a number of trees had been lost. "There's been ongoing discussion between the Causeway Coast and Glens Council, Transport NI, the [National] Trust and other interested parties to ensure that we have a comprehensive plan for this are," he said in an interview with BBC.
The same causes were also confirmed by Steve Mc Cartney of Causeway Coast and Glens Council and cleared that the number of tourist and visitors are unlikely the cause. "Most of the nutrients that this tree and the other trees will get are from the trees on either side of the road, so the traffic on the road probably isn't as major a factor as we might expect," he said.
For as long as history is concerned, the 200-year old trees were planted by the Stuart family to grace their entrance to their Gracehill House Mansion. There is an ethereal feel in a covered passageway due to branches that intertwined and entangled. There are about 150 trees planted but now reduced to 90 due to calamities and time as well.