A.A. Milne made Ashdown Forest world famous. He and his family lived on the outskirts- in a farmhouse in the parish of Hartfield which later belonged to Brian Jones, founder of The Rolling Stones ("a nasty little shit" according to one of his friends)- who died or was murdered there. The last I heard the house was on the market and proving hard to sell- because who wants to have coachloads of Pooh and Rolling Stones' enthusiasts continually pulling up at the gate?
They were asking £2,000,000 for it.
The Forest was established by the Normans as a place to hunt deer. There are still deer wandering around in it though I didn't see any. According to the Forest's website they caused 227 road accidents last year.
It's a lovely place...
We pulled in at the Gill's Lap carpark and I walked around a bit. Gill's Lap appears in the books as Galleon's Lap. Milne lightly fictionalised the place- I suppose so he could exercise his poetic licence- but the code isn't hard to crack. The Hundred Acre Wood- for instance- the place where Owl lived- is actually The Five Hundred Acre Wood.
This is the monument to Milne and his illustrator E.H. Shepherd at Gill's Lap..
"And by and by they came to an enchanted place at the very top of the forest called Galleon's lap.."
Beautifully atmospheric photos. I'm looking at the deeper yellow behind the foreground daffodils at Gills/Galleons Lap. Is that gorse? Or Planta Genista (broom)? I think it's the right season for either. Or is it something else entirely?
One pictures a bus full of Milne enthusiasts disembarking and being engulfed by a busload of Stones fans. The mind boggles.