Jonathan Stedall


Jonathan Stedall has directed some of our most enjoyable documentaries, and now has turned his hand to something as lively, original and thoughtful in prose

CRAIG BROWN, critic and satirist

Enchanting is the word. I love your characters and the delicate and comic way you’ve played into the Milne stories, and the beautiful ponderings on life. It’s a triumph and I’m sure it will fly.

ISABELLA TREE, author of Wilding – the return of nature to a British farm

An enchanting fable which led me to ask myself what is actually real

SIR MARK TULLY, broadcaster and author of India’s Unending Journey

Jonathan’s gentle and subtle voice weaves a fable through the vehicle of A.A. Milne’s characters, transposed into the prosaic quandaries of contemporary life. With a simplicity and clarity of style, it can be read as an allegory on the bonds of friendship, morality and decency, and the vicissitudes of standing up to forces that ignore justice and humanity.

SAIED DAI, artist

Jonathan Stedall’s homage to his childhood hero Winnie the Pooh is a honeypot of wisdom and gentle humour

JEREMY NAYDLER, cultural historian, gardener, and author of In the Shadow of the Machine

This lively story, based on A.A. Milne’s ‘Winnie the Pooh’ characters, stayed with me long after reading it. The book is easily accessible and amusing. It also contains deeper philosophical considerations. These relate to community life, ecological issues and gentle reflections about the meaning of life and death. The story also shows how very different people can unite together in a common cause, and the unexpected beneficial changes that can help reshape their lives. I would value seeing this wise little book in print, and can imagine sharing it with friends and family, and encouraging some thought-provoking discussions!

DIANA RUSSELL-CAREY, psychotherapist

Jonathan Stedall revisits A.A.Milne’s Ashdown Forest, now under threat, as seen through the eyes of a familiar cast of characters, with all their strengths and foibles. Their attempts to save the forest, and in doing so reinforce their own bonds, results in a nostalgic and tender tale.


Jonathan’s book opens as a gentle eulogy to A.A. Milne. But as we are drawn into his village and its inhabitants, we find ourselves in a place of enchantment, yet also in a contemporary world. The modern threat of a bypass is the backdrop for finely observed actions, with players full of doubt, foibles, assertiveness and diffidence. As we come to know this place and its people, we realise that at issue here is far more than a plan for a road. These are characters tussling with the ultimate questions of life: Why are we here? What is our role as human beings? Jonathan weaves a subtle, consistent and often humorous dialogue between the here and now and somewhere deeply beyond.

PIP HEYWOOD, film-maker

An Enchanted Place cover

All text and images © Jonathan Stedall