THE future of Cwmcarn Forest Drive is in doubt after it was announced the site will close later this year so trees affected by disease can be felled.

Natural Resources Wales admitted that "no decision has been made about the future" of the seven-mile drive, but that they were "keen to reopen it if feasible".

A spokesman said they were exploring "all possible funding options" to keep it open, adding: "No decision has been made about the future of Forest Drive yet as it will require considerable investment to repair following the felling and haulage operations."

One of Gwent's most popular atractions, the route through Cwmcarn Forest will close in November to carry out large-scale felling of trees affected by the highly infectious and untreatable larch disease.

Work will be carried out across 162 hectares (400 acres) of forestry remove over infected 50,000 tonnes of timber.

Peter Cloke, from Natural Resources Wales, said that closing Forest Drive was "a very difficult" decision to make but was necessary to make sure the work to prevent further spread of this infectious tree disease is carried out safely.

He added that although the drive itself will be closed: "Cwmcarn Forest, the footpaths, mountain bike trails and its visitor centre are still open for business and is a fantastic place to visit for a day out."