The turf cut maze situated on the edge of the village is reputed to be mediaeval in origin and is one of just eight surviving in England today. Although called a maze it is actually a labyrinth, unicursal in structure and 14 metres in diameter, with just one grass path that winds and back tracks in a circle before finally leading to the centre. The origin of the turf maze is unclear and there are many myths and legends surrounding the reasoning behind their existence, including references to the classical Cretan labyrinth. The Wing maze follows the ‘Chartres’ pattern which, as its name suggests, copies the design of pavement mazes found in European Cathedrals.
It has been said that the maze was followed by penitents on their hand and knees in atonement for their sins. They have also been connected to fertility rights and used for warding off evil spirits. Whatever their origin they remain a unique and fascinatingm conundrum. However, by the 19th century the maze at Wing seems to have lost some of its magic and is described in the Leicester and Rutland directory of 1846 as ‘an ancient maze, in which the rustics of the parish run on feast days’.
Date From: 01/01/2010
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