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. 

Events & Exhibitions

Image for Bat Walk

Bat Walk

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

Bat Walk

This event has now sold out but we have more dates available.
Image for Bat Walk

Bat Walk

Take an exclusive tour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens at night and learn about the nocturnal activities of the bats living in the gardens.
Image for Terrarium Workshop

Terrarium Workshop

Bedford Estates Head Gardener, Tom Abbott will show you how to create a terrarium which you will then get to take home.
Image for Bat Walk

Bat Walk

Take an exclusive tour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens at night and learn about the nocturnal activities of the bats living in the gardens.
Image for Adam Frost: Intro into Garden Design

Adam Frost: Intro into Garden Design

This event has now sold out - please check back at a later date as we are planning similar events to this in the future.
Image for Treasury of Trees Walking Tour

Treasury of Trees Walking Tour

Join us for a guided walk in our Quercetum and Pinetum areas of the gardens to discover our treasury of trees.
Image for Christmas Flowers with Jonathan Moseley

Christmas Flowers with Jonathan Moseley

A masterclass in Christmas flower-arranging with floral expert, Jonathan Moseley.
Image for Woburn Abbey Garden Show 2019

Woburn Abbey Garden Show 2019

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Early Bird rates can now be booked on-line for the Gardeners' Garden Show.