Alan Alexander Milne was born in Hampstead in 1882. His father was a headmaster of a small public school. Alan was his parent's third, last and favourite son. A. A Milne won a scholarship to Westminster and later won an award to the Trinity College, Cambridge. He went to Cambridge in 1900 as a mathematician. He showed a talent for light verse, and became the editor of "Granta", then moved to "Punch". He joined the staff of "Punch" in 1906 and became famous with two series, "Bachelor Days" and "The Rabbits". Like his characters he lived to be unknowable. "My father's heart remained buttoned up all through his life", wrote his son Christopher Milne. He had no close friends, but remained very close to his brother Ken.
In 1913, Milne married Dorothy de Selincourt (known as Daphne) and moved to a house in London's Chelsea section. Daphne and Milne lived together as friends and it was a long and contented marriage.
Christopher Milne was born in 1920 and became known as Billy Moon. Milne then moved to the country, Cotchford farmhouse on the edge of the Ashdown Forest in Sussex and lead a idle, rural life.
In 1922, he wrote "Vespers" about his son saying his prayers and gifted it to his wife. (Read more about Vespers). He then wrote "The Dormouse and the Doctor" and then "When we were Young". The first Winnie-the-Pooh episode appeared on Christmas Eve 1925 under a front page headline and was broadcast on Christmas day from all radio stations. Winnie- the- Pooh stories are based on Christopher Robin's toys and reflect his son's life. Christopher Robin gives his name to the hero. Winnie-the-Pooh is called after his bear, who acquired his name in honour of a Canadian grizzly from Winnipeg whom the child had seen at the London Zoo. Other characters are also based on his toys. Eeyore was a Christmas gift in 1921, Piglet, a gift from a Chelsea neighbour, Kanga came from Harrods.
Milne became ineradicably associated with Pooh books and was haunted by their fame. This also became the cause of disparities between him and his son. Alan Milne died in 1956, aged seventy four. Christopher came to London for the memorial service, which included Pooh's song "How sweet to be a cloud" and "Vespers". Daphne Milne lived another fifteen years, but never saw Christopher Robin again.
Still with his eyes on the world Christopher Robin put out a hand and felt for Pooh's paw.
'Pooh', said Christopher Robin earnestly, 'if I-if I'm not quite-' he stopped and tried again-'Pooh whatever happens, you will understand, won't you?'
'Oh, nothing'. He laughed and jumped to his feet.
'Where?' said Pooh.
'Anywhere', said Christopher Robin.q
So they went off together. But wherever they go and whatever happens to them on the way, in that enchanted place on the top of the Forest a little boy and his Bear will always be playing.