The Hornbeam Maze

Image for The Hornbeam Maze The Hornbeam Maze

Maze or Labyrinth?

The 6th Duke of Bedford designed the Hornbeam Maze in 1831. The plaque over the entrance incorrectly states that this is a Labyrinth, as it is actually a maze. A maze is defined as a branching puzzle which has multiple paths and directions you can take. A labyrinth is defined as a puzzle that has only one non-branching path, which leads to the centre.

At the centre of the maze is The Chinese Pagoda which was built in 1833 and is based on a design by Sir William Chambers dated 1757.

The Hornbeam Maze is open all year round although it may close periodically for maintenance. Please check with admissions.

Image for The Hornbeam Maze The Hornbeam Maze Before Restoration Work

The Hornbeam Maze Restoration

The Woburn Abbey Hornbeam Maze was 6 feet high when restoration work started. The Gardens Team reduced it to 3 feet and 6 inches - a big shock to such an old hedge.

The hornbeam was allowed to fizz with re-growth and then, over 2 years, slowly clipped it back to form the maze you can see in the gardens today. This stage of the restoration work was completed in 2004, and now it is maintained to keep its current height. 

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Events & Exhibitions

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Spring Gardening Skills

Let the Woburn Abbey Gardens Team give you the confidence to tackle essential jobs in your own garden with this seasonal session.
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Easter Flowers with Jonathan Moseley

A masterclass in Easter flower-arranging with floral expert, Jonathan Moseley.
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Parkland Tour - April

Come along on a tour around our beautiful deer park, and experience it as Humphry Repton intended.
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Humphry Repton Study Day

Take an in-depth look at the career of Humphry Repton and what made him such a remarkable landscape gardener.
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Woburn Abbey Gardens Tour and Lunch

Enjoy the splendour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens through the seasons with our 2017 private garden tour and lunch at The Sculpture Gallery.
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Kitchen Gardening

Learn a variety of skills to take away and use in your own Kitchen Garden.
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Wedding Flowers with Jonathan Moseley

A masterclass in wedding flower-arranging with floral expert, Jonathan Moseley.
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Parkland Tour - May

Come along on a tour around our beautiful deer park, and experience it as Humphry Repton intended.
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Woburn Abbey Garden Show 2017

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After the huge success of the 2016 Garden Show this June we are pleased to announce that tickets can now be purchased for the 8th Woburn Abbey Garden Show taking place on 24th and 25th June 2017. Set against the stunning backdrop of Woburn Abbey, ‘The Gardener’s Garden Show’ offers visitors the best location of any show in the UK, taking place within the 42 acres of Abbey Gardens.
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Introduction to Garden Photography

A great opportunity to learn the basics of digital photography
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Woburn Abbey Gardens Tour and Lunch 13th July

Enjoy the splendour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens through the seasons with our 2017 private garden tour and lunch at The Sculpture Gallery.
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Bee Walk

Discover the importance of attracting bees to your garden and, more importantly, how to attract them.
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Garden Safari Week - July

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Calling all Garden Explorers! Come and join us on our Garden Safari this summer holiday.
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Parkland Tour - July

Come along on a tour around our beautiful deer park, and experience it as Humphry Repton intended.
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Garden Safari Week - August

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Calling all Garden Explorers! Come and join us on our Garden Safari this summer holiday.
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Parkland Tour - August

Come along on a tour around our beautiful deer park, and experience it as Humphry Repton intended.
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Bat Walks

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Take an exclusive tour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens at night and learn about the nocturnal activities of the bats living in the gardens.
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Bat Walks

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Take an exclusive tour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens at night and learn about the nocturnal activities of the bats living in the gardens.
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Pruning Study Day

This session is designed to give you a wide range of pruning skills and enable you to get hands on with plant material to gain the confidence with your own garden maintenance.
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Christmas Flowers with Jonathan Moseley

A masterclass in Christmas flower-arranging with floral expert, Jonathan Moseley.