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The House at Pooh Corner, Cotchford Farm: A Real Storybook House

My favorite type of home tour ever is when we tour a house that falls into the category of what I think of as a “storybook home.” I love those so much! Don’t ask me to define what a storybook house is because that would probably turn into some rambling, gushing narrative, and in the end, it’s probably a subjective thing anyway. But sometimes you just know one when you see one, know what I mean? I know you do.

The home we are touring today is a storybook house by anyone’s definition. It’s the home where a well-loved storybook was actually written and where the scenes in that storybook were often played out in real life. The title of this post gave it away, we’re touring Cotchford Farm, the iconic home where A. A. Milne wrote the beloved stories of Winnie-the-Pooh. Milne purchased Cotchford Farm as a country home for his family, a place to spend weekends and special times during the spring and summer months.

Cotchford Farm, often referred to as The House At Pooh Corner, is located in Hartfield, East Sussex, England. Milne wrote Winnie-the-Pooh in 1926 and The House at Pooh Corner in 1928. The main character, Winnie-the-Pooh, a naive, thoughtful and steadfast bear, was actually named after a teddy bear belonging to the author’s son, Christopher Robin Mine. Originally, Christopher’s bear was named Edward but he changed the name to Winnie after seeing a bear by that name at the London Zoo.

The Pooh part of the name comes from a swan named, Pooh that they saw once while on holiday. All the other characters in the Winnie-the-Pooh stories came from Christopher’s other toys, Tigger, Kanga, Eeyore, Piglet and Roo except for Owl, Rabbit and Gopher.

House At Pooh Corner, Cotchford Farm

 Cotchford Farm

The Winnie-the-Pooh stories take place in a forest that was modeled after Ashdown Forest in England, a forest located around one mile north of Cotchford Farm. The locations mentioned in the stories can be directly linked to areas in and around Ashdown Forest like Hundred Acre Wood is really 500 Acre Wood and Galleon’s Leap is the well-known hilltop, Gill’s Lap. Many of the illustrations in the book done by E. H. Shepard, are actual locations in and around Ashdown Forest. I just love knowing that the places in the Pooh books actually exist in real life…makes it all even more special!

House At Pooh Corner, Cotchford Farm

 

Even if the wonderful stories of Winnie-the-Pooh had not been dreamed up here at Cotchford Farm, this home has that “storybook” quality inside and out. Just look at this sweet entrance!

House At Pooh Corner Front Door, Cotchford Farm

 

Cotchford Farm is three stories tall and has six bedrooms, three bathrooms and lots of charming features like exposed timbers and beams.  When I saw the interior of Cotchford Farm, it reminded me so much of the home built for the movie, The Holiday.

House At Pooh Corner, Cotchford Farm

 

Do they remind you of each other, too? (Picture below is living room in Rosehill Cottage in the movie, The Holiday.)

Rosehill Cottage in the movie, The Holiday

 

I love this cozy inglenook fireplace/seating area in Cotchford Farm. Imagine curling up here on a chilly evening with a good book. I’m not sure I’d ever leave.

House At Pooh Corner, Cotchford Farm

 

The kitchen…it appears to have been “modernized” at some point.

House At Pooh Corner Kitchen, Cotchford Farm

 

Love the farmhouse table in this wonderful paneled dining room. The ceilings feel really low, don’t they? Wonder if they are really low or just seem that way in the photos?

House At Pooh Corner Dining Room, Cotchford Farm

 

A bedroom at Cotchford Farm…I love the windows in this home…and there are so many! Love a home with lots and lots of windows!

House At Pooh Corner Bedroom, Cotchford Farm

 

Another bedroom…love the slanted ceiling…darling room!

House At Pooh Corner, Cotchford Farm

 

The gardens around Cotchford Farm are so beautiful!

House At Pooh Corner, Cotchford Farm

 

This home was for sale a couple of years ago. I’m not sure who bought it but I hope they haven’t changed it very much. What a responsibility it would be to own such an iconic home, one where tourists often visit for a sneak peek.

House At Pooh Corner, Cotchford Farm

 

In the garden you’ll find several statues including this one of Christopher Robin. There are several other sculptures and features in the garden that pay homage to the stories of Winnie-the-Pooh.

Christopher Robin Statue at the House at Pooh Corner

 

I was so happy to read, the real toys that inspired the Winnie-the-Pooh stories are on display for all to enjoy at the New York Public Library. Have you ever been to that library and seen them?

Original Winnie the Pooh Stuffed Toys

 

Love touring storybook homes? Take the tour of the home created for the movie, The Holiday here: Tour the Adorable Cottage, Rosehill Cottage in the movie, The Holiday

Rosehill Cottage in the movie, The Holiday

 

You’ll find additional photos of  Cotchford Farm where I found these HERE.




Comments

  1. Storybook homes are one of my favorites too. They are always so warm and cozy and full of life and color.

  2. Ohhhhh, LOVE it! So homey and welcoming. I’ve always loved the Pooh bear…this is sooo beautiful. *sigh* Oh, and those low ceilings, I can relate. This old house of ours used to belong to my in-laws. For a while my husband lived here as a child. The ceilings aren’t even quite 8 foot. They had used end pieces from the mill and even had to piece some (in the living room). It is heart pine and I love it. We had a fire one Christmas and damaged the walls in the dining room which we ended up having to sheet rock two of the walls because we couldn’t find any heart pine paneling that wide to match up with the other two.

    One of my favorite storybook houses was one built to look like a hobbitt lives there, down to the round door. I believe I saw it on Houzz. It is just adorable. Don’t know though, I’d probably trip over the threshold and break my neck! There’s a reason why my name is not Grace~~lol.

  3. Who doesn’t love a storybook home??! No one that I would ever want to know, that’s for sure ;)

    I think the ceilings in many older, historical homes are typically pretty low. Having high ceilings isn’t very energy efficient. Sometimes depending on the room I actually prefer a lower ceiling.

    • I’ve noticed that especially with some of the little English cottages. Doreen, did you ever see the movie, Waking Ned Divine? I love that movie! Anyway, it’s set in a little Irish village and the houses are pretty small with low ceilings.

  4. My guess that the ceilings are really that low. England has very old houses still in use. This house is most likely one of them. Of course our definition of an old house differs from theirs.
    My storybook house is very old and cottagey . It has low ceiling, lots of wood, floral fabrics, comfy sink into furniture. The gardens ramble and full f blooming flowers, little hidden spaces, and garden animals.

  5. I love this post! Oh! To be able to actually LIVE there!
    I have never seen the original stuffed animals that inspired A.A. Milne…thank you for posting the photograph!

    xo

    Andie

    • I know…can’t even imagine but I’d love it! Thanks Andie. I was amazed the toys still look as good as they do. They really look like the characters in the stories, too don’t they?

  6. I loved this post, Susan! It was so much fun to learn more about my favorite storybook character ever since childhood. :) The house is utterly amazing, and it was fun to take a peek inside! Thank you for all of your hard work in researching these beautiful homes!

    xoxo laurie

  7. Bonsoir,
    Des maisons qui ont une âme et certainement de belles histoires à raconter…
    Gros bisous

  8. What a charming place, and what fun to find out so much of the story was based on real people, places and things. I imagine spending time in such surroundings, you couldn’t resist writing stories.

  9. I could live there happily ever after..especially with that cool ottoman by the fireplace!! Must cover my ottoman with an antique rug… franki

  10. My maiden name was Milne so Winnie has always been a part of my life. My favorite is: “Hush, Hush whispers who dares, Christopher Robin is saying his prayers.” My Mom had her last baby around Christmas time and we got her to name him Christopher. Thanks for sharing.

  11. Oh my goodness I’m in love with the exterior. It absolutely looks like the one from the Holiday. Love that movie

    http://www.designsbykaty.com

  12. Susan, the exterior shots make me think of a storybook home for certain. Everything about this home reads “charming” to me. Thanks for sharing. Also, didn’t know the original stuffed animals are on display in the NYC Library. I’m adding that to my NY list. Love that library anyway! My childhood teddy looks much the same as this one. ‘-)

  13. I would love to see them in person, too! Awww, that is so nice, Sarah. Do you still have him? I still have all of Chip’s including the one he most carried around. I was thinking on my next trip to see them, I should take them all up for Court.

  14. Love me a storybook home!!! This one is so charming, esp. since we know who lived there!! Had no idea the childhood animals are on display in NYC…what a treat….they look so well loved….
    The Holiday is one of my most favorite movies!!! Its a sweet story on both sides of the ocean….love the cottage! Also noticed right away the ottoman covered in an Oriental rug…..how funny!! I also have my kid’s favorite animals tucked away, hoping for some grandchildren to share them with!!
    Susan, read your note about the warbler……they are small and sweet birds….they go for the fruit blossoms on the trees. When bird watching eons ago, I noticed how they actually eat the center of the flower and catch all the tiny insects in there. They are so busy pollinating!!

  15. Charlotte Moseley says:

    I absolutely loved the tour of the Cotchford Farms home. My favorites were the entrance, and the inglenook fireplace. The kitchen reminded me of Julia Child’s kitchen. Thanks for sharing.

  16. Jackie Manning says:

    It’s probably the only place in the world where Winnie-the-Pooh meets the Rolling Stones. Cotchford Farm, in East Sussex, is forever etched into rock-and-roll history as the place where, in July 1969, guitarist Brian Jones was found floating face down in the swimming pool. From:- http://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/9258085/The-rock-n-roll-house-at-Pooh-corner.html
    I can see that you will be in the UK soon visiting our wonderful old houses. My sister is visiting from Australia soon
    ( she has been there 36 years) and is very keen to see Highclere Castle because of the link to Downton Abbey, she is also visiting Cornwall which has also been used in lots of TV and film filming and Oxford and surrounding areas again used in TV productions. Jackie in Surrey, UK.x

  17. Jake's a Girl says:

    The thing I love about these places is that they are forever stamped on our hearts and in our memories.
    When I’m 90 i’ll remember reading Winnie the Pooh, his friends and his 100-acre wood to my son. As well as the many beautiful classic stories that whisk the littles away to the sandman. I didn’t mind going there myself. ;)
    I have a VCR tape of Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day that my son loved to watch. I have to admit I pull it
    out of the box on occasion and watch it again. I can’t wait to watch it with my grandson.

    Thanks you for sharing this.
    Jake’s a Girl

  18. SharonFromMichigan says:

    I just adore that one bedroom with the slanted ceilings. Looks like the ceilings and walls could be wallpapered. I think that taking your son’s favorite stuffed animals for your grandson would be a wonderful idea! Of course your grandson will have to have a bear of his own too! Maybe Grandma could bring a stuffed Winnie-the-Pooh for him?

    • Sharon, Chip actually had one…not sure if it’s in the basement or where. I need to look for it. I remember he was yellow with a little red top. :) I love that bedroom, too! The slanted ceilings, the wallpaper…it’s so homey and comforting.

  19. Well…….you did it THIS TIME!! I needed a boost this day……terribly. When I came upon the word “Pooh”, I knew everything wrong was going to be right. Susan, what is it Pooh says??? Oh bother!!! I needed some of Pooh’s wisdom and in a round about way, you provided. Thank you this day and many more. I received my very first Pooh item about 20 years ago from my now 48 yr. old son. It’s a precious little cup with two handles, especially made for a child. In the bottom is a tiny little Pooh looking up at you when it’s empty. :) Todd and I have always had a special connection through Pooh. Susan…..I’m sure Pooh will find his way into Court’s life too. Amazing how one man, one bear and honey can make such a difference in so many lives.

    PS……Have any of you hear of Benjamin Hoff? Author of The Tao of Pooh??? Tao in Chinese means “way”. I’m not weird but would suggest checking it out. Mr. Hoff used Pooh’s wisdom to pass on wisdom. There’s also another book by Hoff….The Te of Piglet. I was afraid to read them at first. Very interesting. Would love to know if anyone has read them as well.

  20. pam ~ crumpety cottage says:

    Susan, I’m so glad you featured Cotchford Farm. Aside from the modernized kitchen, it really is the quintessential English cottage. *Sigh* I love my Pooh bear. :)

    • claire goulding says:

      ive visited here, it is gorgeous, and I played pooh sticks at the bridge like in the book. tho the bridge they have now isn’t the original as so many people used it. theres a gi shop nearby,it really is the most wonderful countryside,and the forest has huge trees its like being in a fairytale!

  21. Carre Cederholm says:

    Please, may I live here?

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