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A clever game

But there are fresh fears that Britain may lose the Poohsticks Bridge to an overseas buyer, as the aristocrat says that owing to a “family crisis” he has been left with no choice but to resell it before he has even had the chance to return it to the place that inspired Milne’s 100 Acre Wood.

“I’m going to be forced for reasons I don’t really want to go into – a family crisis – to resell it,” Lord De La Warr told The Telegraph.

“And it upsets me because I’m quite certain it’ll be bought by [bidders in] America or Japan or Bulgaria, or the people who bid for it before,” he added. “It is generally a piece of cultural heritage and an awful lot of people know that. It saddens me a lot that it may have to go overseas.”

Right, right.

Lord De La Warr had considered setting up a crowdfunder to raise money so that he would not be forced to sell the landmark, but has since changed his mind over fears of how the public would perceive an aristocrat landowner asking for funding.

“If I mention crowdfunding it doesn’t look very good, does it? Everybody thinks that anyone with a fair amount of land is immensely rich. Well, unfortunately, that’s not entirely the case. Maybe rich in terms of land, but it doesn’t mean you’ve got any cash,” he said.

“You can see another newspaper picking it up and saying ‘well we know he’s a rich landed aristocrat, what’s he doing trying to get public funds?’ People will say ‘he’s just trying to have his cake and eat it, just trying to recover the costs of the bridge’.”

He added: “Unless somebody can persuade me that public funding is the right route then it unfortunately has to be sold. It distresses me a lot.”

Don’t make me do it, really, don’t make me do it!

7 thoughts on “A clever game”

  1. Sell it. It’s not a particularly nice bridge. The timbers don’t look much older than 20 or 30 years either so I suspect it was completely rebuilt back then.

  2. It was indeed rebuilt 20 or 30 years ago. Japanese friends visited us and wanted to see Poohsticks bridge so we went there. As I recall, the rebuild had been funded by a commercial (Japanese?) donor…

  3. My band played a gig at Buckhurst Park as part of our world tour. It’s a lovely, well-proportioned house. A forebear of the present earl was governor of Delaware (NMPKT!) from whom it takes its name. If the bridge needs to be sold that’s where the most likely buyer will be found because that’s two associations for the price of one.

  4. A public bridleway cross it, so why not dedicate it as a public highway maintainable by the council? Oh, but a private road leads to it, and they would need to agree to their road being adopted as well. Google Streetview shows each end fetoon with signs saying “PRIVATE!!!! GO AWAY!!!!!” (well,nearly)

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