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Winnie The Pooh, Ashdown Forest’s World Famous Bear (Part 2)

  • RH19
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Over the years, the honey-loving bear has proved to be a success for Disney, becoming one of its most popular franchises. The cute, loveable bear and friends have starred in a series of animated productions and have provided countless merchandising opportunities for the corporation.  Click here to read Part 1

After buying Cotchford Farmhouse in Hartfield as his weekend retreat, Pooh creator, A.A Milne found inspiration in the surrounding Ashdown Forest, and using his son’s Teddy as a starting point, the idea of Pooh Bear was born.

Pooh Bear first appeared on Christmas Eve 1925 in the London Evening News in a story called The Wrong Sort of Bees. Many locations on Ashdown Forest became the setting for the subsequent two books that closely followed, notably Five Hundred Acre Wood became Hundred Acre Wood.

Pooh first appearance in colour was 1932, when he first acquired his now distinctive red jumper, and in 1947, Pooh and his friends were spotted in the corner of the living room at the author’s home by A.A Milne’s American Publisher.

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Did you know?

E.H Shepard’s original book illustrations were modelled on his own son’s bear called Growler and not, in fact Christopher Robin Milne’s toy bear

Christopher Robin’s toy bear is on display in New York City at the Main Branch of the Public Library

Pooh Bear appears on the Pavement of the Stars in Hollywood

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The publisher took them, with permission, on a promotional tour of the USA. Since that time, the toys have returned just twice, the first occasion to mark E.H Shepard’s 90th birthday and the second time in 1976 to celebrate Pooh’s 50th birthday.

Originally, people in the quiet village of Hartfield found the sudden onslaught of Winnie tourists difficult but now you can pick up maps showing all the key locations on Ashdown Forest from the Forest Centre and you can find refreshments at Piglet’s Tearoom at Pooh Corner in Hartfield.

They sell a selection of Pooh related paraphernalia including a fully-illustrated booklet guide and snacks such as Kanga’s crumpets and Hunnycombe. They also have an online club with an interactive Pooh Country Tour.

By Rachel Whitlam

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How To Play Poohsticks
First, competitors select a stick and show it to your fellow competitors.

Check which way the stream is flowing – competitors need to face the stream on the side where it runs in, under the bridge, upstream.

Choose someone to go first – this can be either the oldest or the youngest competitor.

All the competitors stand side by side facing upstream.

Competitors hold their stick at arms-length over the stream, taller competitors should lower their arms to bring all the sticks to the same height over the stream as the shortest competitor’s stick.

The starter calls – ready, steady, go! and all the competitors drop their sticks.

At this point in the game all the players must cross to the downstream side of the bridge.

Look over the edge of the bridge for the sticks to emerge – the competitor with the first Stick to float from under the bridge, is the winner. [/box] [/one_third_last]

 

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