John back on the road after hospital stay
OLD-STYLE travelling man John Treagood is back on the road after being laid up in hospital.
Mr Treagood, who has lived the travelling life in and around Mid Devon with his horse Glidor, a caravan and two small dogs, had been "missing" from his normal country lane circuit.
Derek Hawkins, who lives in Uffculme and has known Mr Treagood for some time, said the traveller had been in hospital.
He said: "It appears he suffered a fall near Willand and injured his face or jaw. He was in hospital for treatment.
"While he was there a farmer looked after his horse and his two dogs were taken in by somebody living nearby.
"I went up to see him at Willand afterwards and he seems all right now, although he says he is taking things easy.
"I know there were quite a lot of people worried about his absence."
Mr Treagood lectured in environmental studies in Yorkshire until he turned his back on mainstream life 40 years ago. He went for a walk one day, didn't stop and never went back.
He walked to the West Country, bought a horse when he had saved enough money and built a wagon based on a Kentish bow top design.
Over Christmas and New Year, he usually parks up somewhere near Exeter.
John, 76, believes his life is getting better each year, as the rest of the "sane world" frets and panics. Even though he is entitled as a pensioner, John does not take any state benefits, declaring: "It is immoral."
He makes money doing odd jobs such as pruning hedges, while collecting water from streams and food from the landscape on his travels. He drinks three pints of water a day to "rid himself of impurities", while old Glidor will sink 10 of the 15 gallons of water he collects daily.
John is rarely ill, but he did once slip from his caravan in the frost, breaking his arm.
He didn't seek hospital treatment until three days after the incident, having walked four miles to a friend for help.
He paints his caravan each spring after checking for woodworm and says he will have it painted black when he needs "to let everyone know I have died".