Monday, 20th October 2008 by John Andresen
Kiwis in England? No, just a large carving of one cut out of this chalk hillside on the slope of Beacon Hill, Wiltshire.
The kiwi was created in 1919 by the New Zealand soldiers who stayed here awaiting ships to take them home after World War I. After riots began breaking out among the men, the officers put them to work creating this giant kiwi and the letters “NZ” – basically just to keep them busy. The enormous kiwi’s beak is 46 meters long, and its body is 6100 square meters.
During World War II, the giant bird had to be covered over due to its standout appearance and proximity to a military base. Subsequently, the poor bird was nearly lost in the 70s and 80s due to neglect, but it was cleaned up in 1986 and is now tended to annually.
Thanks to Jens, Barbara, and Cocal!