Exeter's infamous green grass wagon is back on the road after mishap

Exeter’s famous green grass wagon is back on the road after an unexpected mishap which delayed traffic in the city for a couple of hours. Exeter bottled gas supplier Gordon Stephen, still fondly remembered and called Flash Gordon wherever he goes, is used to turning heads while driving his usual mode of transport – a Bedford truck decorated with artificial grass. However, it generated unwanted attention last Saturday, October 3, when its rear offside back wheel unexpectedly ‘fell off’ as he was approaching the roundabout at the junction of Western Way and the bottom of Heavitree Road, by the Vue Cinema.

Without warning, Gordon was left without a wheel after the axle sheared.

The green grass wagon being towed away

Due to the bad weather conditions that day, it was two hours before the AA were able to come to the rescue with the help of Highfield Garage’s recovery vehicle. The police were called and the wagon was removed from the road. Gordon said: “I’m not certain what caused it; it just fell off.

I tried really hard to get off the road so that it was less of a problem for people coming past both way, but it took about two hours to get someone out as the weather was so bad. “It was a bit frightening when it happened, and I ended up directing the traffic before the police arrived. “Everything has been put right now, but it couldn’t have happened at a worse time because my other vehicle was incapacitated.

These things always seem to come at the worst time..

Exeter's infamous green grass wagon is back on the road after mishapThe damage to the wagon

“I also could have done without it happening because it slowed up people getting their gas. The business has already been under a lot of pressure because I have had to buy more bottles to keep up with recent demand so that has been a big spend.

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“I am still appealing for people to let me know when they have empty bottles so that they can be collected to refill for others. People don’t realise that unless I have empties back it is stifling our business.”

Exeter's infamous green grass wagon is back on the road after mishapGordon Stephen and his ‘green grass wagon’

Gordon has been in the bottled gas business for nearly 43 years.

The former business name Flash Gordon has been replaced by Good News Bottled Gas.

He now has 13 different outlets across the region the business supplies to.

He is hoping to retire soon.

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