There can be few who have not enjoyed this simplest of games.

The recent news of the sale of the bridge that inspired Alan Alexander Milne and his son Christopher Robin Milne to create this game, which then featured in Milne's famous stories of a bear with little brain, prompted us to sit down with a jar of the finest honey (or indeed 'hunny') and consider the implications of insurance cover for bridges and other outdoor and more unusual structures.

The bridge in question was originally located in Ashdown Forest, near the village of Hartfield and known as the Posingford Bridge. It was here that Milne and son are widely accepted to have first played the game

The bridge fell into disrepair and was eventually replaced with a replica in the 1990's, with the original being discovered and carefully restored using both original timber and locally sourced oak.

The bridge was sold at auction, with the winning bid an astonishing £131,000, more than twice its estimate. The buyer, Lord De La Warr, plans to put the bridge on display at his Buckhurst Park estate, home also to the Hundred Acre Wood where Winnie the Pooh and his friends enjoyed countless adventures.

Whilst there are few bridges which evoke such fond memories, you may have a bridge on your own property and there are several things that you should consider.

  • Many policies will exclude cover for bridges and other similar structures (such as jetties, piers, fences and gates). This may be for specific types of damage such as wind, storm or flooding.
  • Rebuilding costs should be considered carefully, particularly for older bridges. In the event of damage necessitating rebuilding, current building and health & safety regulations may specify that improvements are made. This should be factored into the sum insured.
  • Access to your property may be via a bridge and any damage might restrict or prevent you being able to enter or leave the site safely.
  • Some policies may provide an automatic cover extension for outdoor structures, but this should be checked to ensure the types of structure covered and that the sum insured is sufficient.

Lockton can help to identify any ancillary structures at your property which are not part of your main home and make sure that any cover limitations are minimised. We can also arrange for specialist surveys where required to ensure adequacy of sums insured for your peace of mind.

If you need further advice on how to protect your buildings including any bridges where you and your children play Poohsticks, then please contact us today.