Straight from Benoni and from, nicely, all over the place. Two years in the past, companions Linda and Craig took a leap of religion after they offered all of their belongings and transformed a 1968 Mk1 Ford Transit right into a motorhome. Since then, they’ve been on the street with no intention of stopping anytime quickly.

Earlier than embarking on the journey, one thing needs to be stated about Martha, the 53-year-old motorhome.

The long-lasting transit

The Transit is an iconic car in British historical past, synonymous with each different van. Due to its V6 engine, it was additionally thought-about the escape route of alternative for financial institution robbers. Scotland Yard as soon as stated that Transit was concerned in 95% of all financial institution robberies!

The Transit was launched in 1965 and manufactured in an outdated ammunition manufacturing unit in Berkshire. The automobile turned the template for all the following vans, which have been used for a wide range of functions, from ice cream vans to carrying an elephant.

The Mk1 price simply over £ 542 (£ 10,000 or R $ 202,845 in immediately’s cash) when it first launched. Manufacturing took ten years, which made the primary version extraordinarily uncommon. In 1967 Sprite Caravans entered the motorhome market with the brand new Ford Transit.

Together with Ford, the brand new touring coach was a luxurious motorhome, geared up with a bathe and bathroom, optionally with a fridge or oven. On the time of its publication, it price £ 3,800, making it the costliest motorhome on the earth.

Solely three of those Sprite Ford Transit motorhomes have ever been imported to South Africa, and Martha seems to be the one recognized survivor of the six worldwide.

Assembly with Martha

By the way in which, Craig and Linda did not find out about Martha’s household tree after they traveled to Klerksdorp to purchase the van. They transformed the inside, offered their home and all their belongings, and set off – simply earlier than Covid struck.

“After we offered all the things, we truly needed to put up a tent to stow some issues and make room to sleep within the van. We nonetheless had a lot crap to eliminate,” Craig advised Getaway Journal. Right this moment, after lowering their lives to a few pairs of pants and three pairs of shirts and some primary kitchen utensils, they’ve all the things they want.

The Van Life Neighborhood

In what should have been a frightening journey at first, Craig says they met the nicest, charitable folks from all walks of life. That is an excellent factor, as a result of issues did not at all times go easily.

They began a Fb group known as Ford-in Transit, posting common updates on their travels, and found a neighborhood that might show invaluable in instances of want. When Linda and Craig have been staying close to the Drakensberg one evening, it started to rain.

The outdated van started to leak, they usually had to make use of each pot, cup, and bowl to catch the water that seeped into their house. Considered one of her followers, John Knighton, despatched them a sheet by courier that they might put over their van when it rained.

He wasn’t the one one. Many others have been additionally impressed by their story, and an organization known as Trevor’s Tires gave them a brand new set of tires. Jonnesway Instruments donated a toolkit to maintain up with all upkeep work on the van.

Martha will get a service on the Ford Straundale meeting plant.

Even Ford was intrigued when it provided auto service at its Straundale meeting facility and expanded entry to all of its service facilities throughout South Africa.

Arrive someplace – slowly

Craig and Linda have been touring round South Africa when most of us have been “locked up”. They even had a loophole for the transport of alcohol, the place their six-packs have been technically saved within the fridge on their very own property.

All through their journey, they’ve stayed in some moderately precarious locations, corresponding to on line casino parking tons, in addition to the driveways of good individuals who have been met alongside the way in which. Most of all, they met great folks and a neighborhood of like-minded folks, one thing they are saying they might not commerce for the world.

Observe Linda and Craig on their journey right here.

Footage: Linda and Craig Evans


That is (van) life – nomads who reside on the streets

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