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Hellesdon: Good neighbour award for caring granddad

PUBLISHED: 13:43 30 March 2010 | UPDATED: 09:15 02 July 2010

Good neighbour Terry O'Neill being awarded £100 of M&S Vouchers by Russell Heath of Orbit East Resident Engagement.

Good neighbour Terry O'Neill being awarded £100 of M&S Vouchers by Russell Heath of Orbit East Resident Engagement.

Sam Emanuel

When pensioner Valerie Rowe moved into her Hellesdon flat, her new neighbour Terry O-Neill did not hesitate to decorate it and get it into order.

Sam Emanuel

When pensioner Valerie Rowe moved into her Hellesdon flat, her new neighbour Terry O-Neill did not hesitate to decorate it and get it into order.

So Mrs Rowe similarly did not hesitate to nominate her caring neighbour for an award, which saw him winning a well-deserved £100 of Marks and Spencer vouchers.

Mr O'Neill, who did not take any payment for the decorating he did, gives 84-year-old Mrs Rowe regular lifts, often offering without her even asking.

Despite his own health problems, the 73-year-old grandfather-of-four also makes a real effort to keep the gardens near his home in Sadler Road full of flowers, spending his own money on keeping the beds and baskets well-stocked.

Now housing group Orbit East has awarded Mr O'Neill £100 worth of Marks & Spencer vouchers as winner of its Good Neighbour competition.

Tracey Savory, Orbit East neighbourhood manager, said: “This is an excellent, heart-warming example of how our residents can work together to support and look out for each other. We were delighted to be able to acknowledge and reward the help that Mr O'Neill has given to Mrs Rowe.”

Mrs Rowe said: “Mr O'Neill is the most caring neighbour I have ever had.

“He's always helping me if I want a light bulb changed, or need a new vacuum bag fitted or a lift to WI.

“He's just there if I need him. He's a real treasure.”

Mr O'Neill, who lives with his wife Brenda, said he was happy and surprised when he found out Mrs Rowe had put him forward for the award.

He said: “We all talk to each other and all help each other here.

“I know that if my car broke down and I need to get to the doctors' then one of my neighbours would definitely run me up there, and vice versa.”

Do you know anyone who goes the extra mile for people who could be featured in our Good Neighbour Campaign? Call Sam Emanuel on 01603 772438 or email sam.emanuel@archant.co.uk.

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