Announcement follows media storm

Garden Bridge trees and plants

The Garden Bridge Trust has announced that children will be allowed to play Pooh sticks after all.

The statement comes after BD’s story about the ban created a media storm with follow-up articles appearing in the Independent and the Times.

As we reported on Tuesday, a list of 30 prohibited activities produced by the bridge’s backers includes a ban on dropping “any item with the exception of devices intended for the purpose of saving lives”. Games and sport (with the exception of jogging) are also banned.

Times Pooh sticks story

Times Pooh sticks story

The bridge, designed by Thomas Heatherwick, will be filled with trees and shrubs which are essential to Pooh sticks. The children’s game, named after Winnie the Pooh, involves dropping sticks from the upstream side of a bridge and seeing whose makes it to the other side first.

A spokesman for the Garden Bridge Trust argued that most parks have conditions of entry and that theirs, including the ban on dropping things, had been drawn up to protect people on the river and the two embankments.

“Some people have suggested that this means that the popular game of ‘Pooh Sticks’ will not be allowed on the bridge,” he said.

“This is not the case. We will only prevent people throwing items off the bridge if it is deemed to be unsafe for pedestrians on the bridge or for people using the river below.

“We wish players attempting a game the best of luck keeping track of their sticks from 20m above the fast-flowing River Thames.”

Independent Pooh sticks story

Independent Pooh sticks story