Two men charged with criminal damage linked to the felling of the Sycamore Gap tree have arrived at court with balaclavas pulled over their faces.

Daniel Graham, 38, of Milbeck Stables, Carlisle, and Adam Carruthers, 31, arrived at Newcastle Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday in black balaclavas, where they are charged with two counts of criminal damage.

Graham, of Milbeck Stables, Carlisle, entered pleas of not guilty, while Carruthers, of Church Street, Wigton, Cumbria, entered no pleas.

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

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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.

Hexham Courant: Police officers looking at the tree at Sycamore Gap, next to Hadrian's Wall, in Northumberland which has come down overnight after being deliberately felled, the Northumberland National Park Authority has saidPolice officers looking at the tree at Sycamore Gap, next to Hadrian's Wall, in Northumberland which has come down overnight after being deliberately felled, the Northumberland National Park Authority has said (Image: PA MEDIA)

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

Northumbria Police made a number of arrests after the tree was felled and a teenager and a man in his 60s were later both told they will face no further action.

The National Trust, which owns the land on which the tree stood, previously said it was hopeful the sycamore will live on after scientists found salvaged seeds and cuttings are showing positive signs of being viable for new growth.