Oh Bother: Winnie The Pooh's Actual Forest Has Gone Up In Flames
A second large blaze in as many months has ripped through Ashdown Forest, which inspired 'Winnie The Pooh'.
Six fire crews were called to the revered bushland in East Sussex in southern England on Sunday night after a huge fire broke out.
It tore through at least 35 acres of undergrowth in the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, according to the East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service.
The famous forest was the inspiration for the Hundred Acre Wood, the home of Pooh Bear, Tigger, Eeyore and Piglet.
Writer AA Milne came up with the now-famous stories and lovable characters while he lived in nearby Cotchford Farm, Hartfield, in the 1920s.
"It's unusual to have a fire of this size at night," Andrew Gausden of East Sussex fire service told the BBC. "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," Gausden said.
The blaze is not thought to have been started deliberately, he added.
A similar blaze took hold in February during unseasonably dry conditions.
Sadly a lot of wildlife was killed in the fire, including birds nests containing eggs and chicks, as well as rare butterflies.
"Reptiles like adders and lizards would not have been able to move fast enough," Chris Sutton, an Ashdown Ranger forest ranger said.
"Large animals like foxes and deer would have been able to move out of the area quite quickly."
But there is good news, all is not lost.
Grass is expected to start growing within the next month "and in six months you probably won't know too much has gone on here," Sutton said.
So the fictional childhood stories and the real-life ones will live on.