County’s largest ever tree maze officially opened

The county’s largest-ever tree maze has been officially opened at Ely Country Park to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

Designed by Bottisham school pupil Toby Milner, aged 14, the intricate walkways have been planted up with more than 5000 native hornbeam saplings.

A junior maze, aimed at younger children, has also been planted using the layout created by seven-year-old Jonathan Peeling, from Ely.

The smaller maze features wooden carved animals – an idea suggested by four-year-old Astrid McIntosh, from Ely and lovingly brought to life by Witchford-based chainsaw artist Lisa Langley.

They include a heron, a dragonfly, a hare and a frog, representing the wildlife it is possible to find in and around Ely Country Park.

The competition to design two new Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Tree Mazes was organised by East Cambridgeshire District Council as part of the Queen’s Green Canopy Project.

The trees in each maze will be logged on the Queen’s Green Canopy website, along with the hundreds of other trees planted or supplied by the Council during the Jubilee year.

Hornbeam is A-rated when it comes to storing carbon, and when fully grown it is expected to lock-in hundreds of kilograms of carbon, helping to support the Council’s aim to become net carbon zero, and increase biodiversity across the district.

Officially opening the maze, Councillor Alan Sharp, Chairman of East Cambridgeshire District Council said: “I am delighted to open the Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee Tree Mazes and especially pleased Toby and Jonathan could join us for the opening ceremony and to explore the new mazes for the first time. I am sure if Her Majesty was here then she would enjoy exploring the mazes too.”

The mazes will be officially opened to the public from Monday, 30 May and are free to explore.

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