THE WOODLAND that inspired Winnie-the-Pooh has been named as part of a national network of ancient forests to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

Buckhurst Estate in Ashdown Forest is one of 70 woodland areas chosen to be part of the "ancient canopy" marking Her Majesty’s 70 years of service.

The location that inspired one-time resident AA Milne is a diverse, wildlife-rich spot dating back before 1600, with a mix of species including ash, beech, oak, silver birch, sweet chestnut and many more.

Earl De La Warr, owner of the estate, described it as a “huge milestone”.

The Argus: Ashdown Forest. Pictures from AdasGold PhotographyAshdown Forest. Pictures from AdasGold Photography

He said: “I have enormous admiration for Her Majesty and it’s highly unlikely there will ever be another platinum jubilee.

“We were therefore keen to commemorate this huge milestone – and it seemed fitting, given that last year marked both the 95th birthday of Her Majesty and the 95th anniversary of the first publication of Winnie-the-Pooh, that we applied for our wood to become part of this celebration of the nation’s natural, living heritage. 

“I’m so proud to be the owner of such an iconic wood – it is a magical place which has a special place in the imagination of generations of children. 

“This is a fantastic initiative which will raise awareness of treasured habitats across the UK and the importance of conserving them for future generations.”

The Argus: Picture from AdasGold PhotographyPicture from AdasGold Photography

Land agent Jonathan Morris, who advises the Buckhurst Estate, described the location immortalised through the adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh and Christopher Robin, the character based on AA Milne’s son, as “unique and important to our natural and literary history”.

Mr Morris added: “People love walking on the footpaths through the wood. It’s brimming with biodiversity ranging from woodland birds and several species of raptor to deer. There is a wide variety of invertebrates, flowers and fauna. 

“Buckhurst is still very much a working estate. It produces organic meat from its herd of traditional Sussex and Longhorn cattle, and is home to the oldest registered Shetland ponies in the world, bred by Lady De La Warr.

“As with all our great country estates, though, it blends a commercial approach with a strong commitment to conservation.”

As part of the Queen’s Green Canopy project, people are being invited to plant a tree for the jubilee. For more information visit the website.