Sussex fire crews tackle blaze in 'Winnie the Pooh' wood

A scene in the Ashdown Forest
Image caption Ashdown Forest is in a region now declared a drought area

Fire crews in Sussex have been tackling a blaze in woodland made famous by AA Milne's Winnie the Pooh.

The fire in Ashdown Forest was discovered at about 10:20 GMT after controlled burning spread to nearby gorse and undergrowth.

Around 25 firefighters from stations in East and West Sussex attended.

They had the blaze under control within 90 minutes and out completely by 13:00 GMT, but crews remained at the scene damping down.

A spokesman said a water carrier had been sent to the edge of the forest and fire-and-rescue Land Rovers ferried the water to the scene.

Ashdown Forest, on the borders of East and West Sussex, was the setting for the Winnie the Pooh books, which featured a fictional Hundred Acre Wood.

The woodland is in the middle of a drought area which was declared last week.

A spokesman for East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service said: "This incident just goes to show how dry the conditions currently are, and we would urge the public to be extra vigilant when in the forest.

"There has not been a lot of rain this winter so the foliage is very dry. All you need is a discarded cigarette and a bit of wind to fan the flames for a fire to start."

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