It is one of the most eagerly-awaited reveals of the summer. What is the design for this year’s York Maze?
In the 21 years it has been running, the maze has had themes as varied as Star Wars, The Lion King and Roald Dahl.
And for 2023, it has gone all Ancient Egypt!
A huge image of the boy pharaoh Tutankhamun has been created at the York Maze at Elvington.
It marks 100 years since the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb and more than 3,000 years since his death.
The 2023 York Maze design was officially opened today (Friday) by George Herbert, 8th Earl of Carnarvon. He’s the great-grandson of the 5th Earl of Carnarvon who along with famous Egyptologist Howard Carter was first to enter the tomb 100 years ago.
Farmer Tom Pearcy painstakingly cut more than three miles of pathways into his 15-acre field containing over a million maize plants to create the biggest ever image of Tutankhamun, marking the centenary of the opening of the burial chamber.
The entrance to the tomb was first discovered in November 1922, but it wasn’t until 17th February 1923 that Howard Carter and his patron and co-explorer Lord Carnarvon broke through the sealed door to the burial chamber itself.
Covering an area the size of eight Wembley football pitches York Maze is believed to be the biggest maze in Europe and one of the largest in the world.
When viewed from the air the York Maze design shows the iconic image of Tutankhamun. At over 100m in diameter the head of giant figure is bigger than the Royal Albert Hall!
Farmer and York Maze supremo Tom Pearcy said: “I have always been fascinated by ancient Egypt and the lives of the pharaohs.
“King Tutankhamun’s sarcophagus is such an iconic image, it makes a great maize maze which visitors can explore and try to find their way through.
“I have also set a tricky hieroglyphic quiz trail within the maze, a real corn-undrum!”
George Herbert, 8th Earl of Carnarvon said: “My great-grandfather the 5th Earl of Carnarvon was one of the great explorers and excavators of his time and a talented photographer.
“He would have been amazed, as I am, to see this incredible image of Tutankhamun carved into a field of maize.
“As a photographer my great-grandfather knew the power of an image to tell a story and made sure that when he and Carter entered the tomb photographs of the discovery were captured and sent around the world.
“It is fantastic that 100 years on this amazing image of Tutankhamun will also be sent around the world!”
- The Tutankhamun Centenary Maze is open for visitors to explore from Saturday 15th July to Monday 4th September 2023 when the crop will be harvested. For details of opening times visit www.yorkmaze.co.uk.
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