'Man in the woods' dies, aged 77

PUBLISHED: 11:51 12 March 2009 | UPDATED: 21:43 31 May 2010

Dick Barratt celebrating Christmas 2007  Picture: SUBMITTED

Dick Barratt celebrating Christmas 2007 Picture: SUBMITTED

A POPULAR local character, who spent the last 40 years living in the woods at Quendon, has died. Dick Barratt, known by most as the man in the woods , had been ill for several weeks and recently had a leg amputated because of gangrene. He died on Wednesday evenin

A POPULAR local character, who spent the last 40 years living in the woods at Quendon, has died.

Dick Barratt, known by most as "the man in the woods", had been ill for several weeks and had a leg amputated because of gangrene.

He died on Wednesday evening at Addenbrooke's Hospital, aged 77.

Neighbours John and Pat Wawn paid tribute to him. Mrs Wawn said: "Dick was a genuine gypsy and moved to the area about the same time as we did to be near Queenie, who we think was a relative. She died a long time ago but he stayed.

"Everyone knew him and he was very much part of the scenery.

"He was very well liked and respected and he was honest, which you can't say that about everyone these days.

"I think the awful weather this winter was just too much for him."

Mr Barratt made his home under a variety of tents and canopies after moving to the area from Northamptonshire.

He was often seen walking his pram and the numerous dogs he looked after, while people regularly left him food and clothing.

"People really cared about him, we certainly did," added Mrs Wawn. "He was a good neighbour to us over the years and his death has come as a blow."

DID you know Mr Barrett and want to pay him a tribute? E-mail us at editor@saffronwaldenreporter.co.uk

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