The fire burned overnight claiming 35 acres of the Ashdown Forest – known to the world as Winnie the Pooh's Hundred Acre Woods.

Beginning after 9pm on Sunday, the blaze in the East Sussex heritage area was not brought under control until 4am yesterday morning.

The area popularised by the children's books of AA Milne was affected by a wildfire that seems to have caught people off guard.

100 Acre woods: The blaze affected 35 acres of Ashdown Forest, Sussex. Photo / Twitter, HSYouldon
100 Acre woods: The blaze affected 35 acres of Ashdown Forest, Sussex. Photo / Twitter, HSYouldon

"It's unusual to have a fire of this size at night," Sussex fire commander, Andrew Gausden told CNN.

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"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."

Six fire crews were summoned to the area from four services across Sussex.

The setting for the Winnie the Pooh books, author AA Milne lived in the nearby Crotchford Farm in the 1920s and was greatly inspired by the woods.

Pooh sticks: The Sussex wood holds many features recognisable to fans of the Winnie the Pooh books. Photo / Getty Images
Pooh sticks: The Sussex wood holds many features recognisable to fans of the Winnie the Pooh books. Photo / Getty Images

In the much loved stories the forest known as the 'Hundred Acre Woods' the toy animals Tigger, Eeyore and Piglet joined the author's son Christopher Robin on adventures.

The area was recently used as the location for two films about AA Milne including a 2017 biopic and a 2018 'live action' film by Disney.

The Winnie the Pooh stories published over 90 years ago, by the author A.A. Milne and illustrator E.H Shephard brought world-wide fame to the woods.
The Winnie the Pooh stories published over 90 years ago, by the author A.A. Milne and illustrator E.H Shephard brought world-wide fame to the woods.

Ashdown Forest is in the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty south of London, on the borders of Kent, Sussex and Surrey.

The Weald covers an area of 6500 acres, but it is this particular 100 acres affected by the fires that are best known for their connection to the books and films.

It does not appear the fire was started deliberately.

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Two fires damaged the same forest in February.

With additional reporting from AP