A popular postman has died aged 61 after losing a battle with cancer, but not until he made one final delivery - a message to others not to ignore symptoms.

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Neville Amies from Swafield took mail to more than 500 homes in the Walcott area, and was well-known as a caring man who checked on the housebound during his rounds.

He lived for his work, was off sick just once in 30 years, and would find any excuse to help out or cover for his colleagues.

Mr Amies was diagnosed with bowel cancer last year and battled for months with the hope of returning to his work, but discovered the disease had spread to his pelvis - and died in the Priscilla Bacon Lodge just a week after his 61st birthday.

While organising his personal matters in hospital he made a plea that “I want people to be aware of what I overlooked”.

Mr Amies urged people to be aware of symptoms and go to see their doctor rather than ignore them.

He lived all his life in Swafield and loved his garden and cats. He started working for North Walsham Steam Laundry at the age of 15, then became an assembly worker at the Crane Fruehauf factory before joining the postal service.

He never married, but was very close to his only brother, John a former champion speedway rider, and his family. Mr Amies helped nurse their mother, who was suffering from dementia, for eight years until her death in 2004.

Mr Amies was buried at St Nicholas Church, Swafield where more than 160 people attended the service and uniformed postal workers formed a guard of honour at the church door.

The coffin was followed by John Amies, his wife Janice, their son Jonathan, daughter-in-law Sarah and nine-month-old grandson Jude. The service was conducted by the Revd Eiler Mellerup.

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