Lost and found: Volunteers restore castle’s millennium maze

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The maze at Belfast Castle has been revived by a group of volunteers from the Cave Hill Conservation Campaign.

The feature was created to mark the new millennium but had since become overgrown and unkempt.

Over the past two years work has been carried out to remove large overhanging trees, improve the walls and trails throughout the maze, plant new fruit trees and excavate a colourful mural that became buried.

Lord Mayor of Belfast Ryan Murphy said: “The refurbishment and revival of the maze by the Cave Hill Conservation Campaign is fantastic.

“It’s a celebration of volunteerism and is a shining example of the wide variety of different activities and sites available in our parks and open spaces.

“The project team have worked diligently over the past two years to bring this unique feature of the Belfast Castle grounds back to life.

“The maze is such an untapped visitor attraction which will undoubtedly play an important role in bringing tourists and locals to the area in greater numbers.”

Cormac Hamill (right), with Ryan Murphy, said the maze had been in danger of becoming a forgotten feature (BCC/PA)

He said: “Over 20 years ago we had the idea of creating a maze there to mark the millennium.

“The work was actually carried out by Belfast City Council.

“Over the years since, it had grown unkempt and neglected and two years ago, we decided to restore it as a quiet restful spot and also a place to intrigue and delight children.

“We have a bunch of dedicated volunteers and we were helped at various times by local community groups.

“Belfast City Council have been very supportive of the work over these two years and together we have brought life to the maze and given it a place and function within the estate.”

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