Famed for his chatty and kindly nature, West Wickham street sweeper Alan Mitchell was given a send off to remember as he retired last week.

The 65-year-old had been a street sweeper in and around West Wickham High Street for nine years.

A number of appreciative residents and traders gathered with local MP Bob Stewart to present Mr Mitchell with a number of gifts on Friday (March 28).

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These included £1000, a hamper with chocolate, wine and an engraved silver tankard, and an album of hand written messages.

Ann Jones, 60, manager of Co-operative Funeralcare in the High Street, said: "I always see him every morning early at about 6.45.

"I know when he's not around because the street is messy.

"He talks to everybody, makes sure they are alright. He looks after the elderly residents."

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She added: "He lifts people up, which is why we put together a collection.

"He has made a big impact and he'll be sorely missed."