Residents living near a woodland area of North Belfast are being urged to get involved in a campaign to maintain the site. Throne Woods, which sits between the Antrim Road and the Whitewell Road, has recently undergone improvement works by the Woodland Trust, which own the wood.

But now environmental charity Groundwork, in partnership with retailer Marks and Spencer, are seeking local volunteers to help maintain the area.

Last year trees at the wood were burnt by youths.

Now, as part of Groundwork’s @myurbangreen campaign a public meeting will be held on Wednesday February 29 to rally local support.

“Throne Wood has its share of stunning native woodland and is an asset to North Belfast,” said Madeleine Kelly, Project Development Officer with Groundwork.

“However, woodlands are living entities and need to be carefully maintained and managed. Throne Wood needs the support of local residents to guarantee its survival, which is why we need to set up a volunteer group to take ownership of the woodland and ensure its upkeep.

“Over the coming months there will be opportunities for local people to learn about woodland management, to identify trees and wildflowers and do some of the practical work that is essential to the preservation of Throne Wood for future generations to enjoy.”

The new support group, Friends of Throne Woods, will be supported by @myurbangreen, a campaign which aims to reconnect urban communities with their environment by being actively involved in shaping the future development, maintenance and management of their greener living spaces.

Future plans for Throne Wood include tree and wildflower planting to improve biodiversity and the removal of invasive species that hinder natural regeneration of the trees.

Children from local schools are already visiting the woodland on a regular basis to take part in a Forest Schools programme.

The public meeting on Throne Woods takes place on Wednesday (February 29) at 7pm in Hazelwood Integrated Primary and Nursery School, 242 Whitewell Road and everyone is welcome.