Fire breaks out in Winnie-The-Pooh woods

A large fire has broken out in Ashdown Forest, which inspired the Hundred Acre Wood in AA Milne’s Winnie-The-Pooh.

East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service was called on Sunday evening to tackle the blaze which covers six hectares (14 acres) of the forest.

Six fire crews along with firefighters from Kent and West Sussex helped tackle the flames which tore through the undergrowth in the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Though the fire has been kept under control, crews are expected to remain there for most of Monday morning.

Ashdown Forest fire
Ashdown Forest fire

The forest was the inspiration for the Hundred Acre Wood, the fictional home of Milne’s Pooh bear in a series of children’s classics.

Andrew Gausden, of East Sussex fire service, told the BBC the fire destroyed a valley area near the the village of Duddleswell.

He said: “It’s unusual to have a fire of this size at night. This seems to have caught hold before people noticed the fire.

“The undergrowth was very dry in the forest, despite the recent rain, and the fire caught quite quickly.”

The blaze is not thought to have been started deliberately, he added.

A similar incident occurred back in February when Ashdown Forest caught fire amid unseasonably dry conditions.

AA Milne’s country home at Cotchford Farm, Hartfield, was located just north of the forest.