GIANT patterns carefully carved in a field of crops and a 1,000-foot Dalek... it’s either an invasion or the launch of the latest York Maze!

Thankfully, it’s the latter, as Colin Baker, the sixth Doctor Who, launched the 2013 design ahead of its opening today.

The maze is also a commemorative tribute to the 50th anniversary of the BBC television show, and includes giant images of the first Doctor from 1963, William Hartnell, and the current, 11th Doctor, Matt Smith, among the crops.

Yorkshire farmer and Doctor Who fan Tom Pearcy said the maze had always been a family attraction, and the Doctor Who theme meant people of all ages could enjoy it.

He said: “We just thought, it’s a cool idea, let’s do it. Hopefully it’s a similar challenge to previous years, but we try to make it family-friendly.

“We’re very pleased with how it’s turned out. I’m forty-odd and grew up watching Doctor Who.

“I was always terrified of the Daleks. I’ve got a son now who is seven, and it’s nice to do something that spans all ages.”

The maze is designed using a GPS computer programme and the coordinates are sent to handheld mapping devices, which staff at the maze follow to cut shapes in the crops.

Previous designs have included Harry Potter, James Bond, and the Vikings, and sixth Doctor Colin Baker praised the work of Tom and his team, as he was treated to a ride in a helicopter to get a bird’s eye view.

Colin said: “It’s just stunning, that someone has the vision and the energy to create something as clever as that. I imagine it will be very popular.

“There are so many anniversary jobs, two or three a week, so it’s a very busy year.

“They are all unusual, but this is truly unique, everything else I do is a variation on a theme, but this is new and very, very original, as well as temporary – three months from now, there will be no sign of it. I think it’s brilliant.”