Did you know the Ashdown Forest in Sussex was a source of inspiration for Winnie-the-Pooh? Many of the places that feature in the original Winnie-the-Pooh stories are real locations in the forest. Wild Boar Wood campsite is the perfect spot to stay if you are interested in exploring the places associated with the stories. The campsite is based in a semi-ancient woodland and will give you a real back to nature experience, just a few miles from the Ashdown Forest, it’s a great base for exploring.
Winnie The Pooh
The first Winnie-the-Pooh story was published in 1926. This was just a year after AA Milne, the author of the Winnie-the-Pooh stories bought a farmhouse in Hartfield on the outskirts of the Ashdown Forest. AA Milne said he based Pooh on a teddy bear belonging to his son, Christopher Robin. The other characters were based on other soft toys owned by Christopher Robin.
The real places that inspired locations in the stories are identifiable by the descriptions and illustrations by EH Shepard. The names that AA Milne chose also tended to be similar to the real place names. These include the Hundred Acre Wood from the stories, which is Five Hundred Acre Wood in the Ashdown Forest. Galleon’s Leap in the stories which is Gill’s Lap in real life and more. You can also visit places which are identified as Eeyore’s Gloomy Place, Roo’s Sandy Pit and The Enchanted Place.
Pooh Sticks Bridge
The best-known location is perhaps the Pooh Sticks Bridge. This is where Christopher Robin and Pooh played the game which is now popular all over the world. The bridge, which has been rebuilt to look like the bridge in the stories, is close to Cotchford Farm, the Ashdown Forest home of the Milne family. It is probably the most popular spot to visit in the forest. Visitors can park up in the closest car park and enjoy a walk of about a mile to the bridge itself. Grab yourself the perfect stick and give it a go.
There is a subtle memorial to AA Milne and EH Shepard close to The Enchanted Place in the Ashdown Forest. (see the walking map mentioned below for details of how to reach it).
Ashdown Forest and Winnie The Pooh
There is no charge for visiting any of the Ashdown Forest Winnie-the-Pooh sites as the forest is the largest common access land in the south east. The Ashdown Forest conservation organisation has produced a walking map for a route that takes in some of the Ashdown Forest Winnie-the-Pooh sites. Pooh fans may also like to visit Pooh Corner – a shop in Hartfield with a large collection of Pooh paraphernalia and the Piglit Tearoom.
Book your stay at Wild Boar Wood Campsite to explore the Ashdown Forest Winnie-the-Pooh sites.
Other Nearby Attractions – Bluebell Railway, Sheffield Park, Nymans