A postman at the centre of Braintree’s missing mail saga has quit as residents continue their battle for compensation after years of lost items.

Semi-retired Phil Townsend is fuming with Royal Mail after struggling to make a claim in connection with his twin daughters’ missing jewellery, which had been sent from his brother in America.

Mr Townsend’s brother has since sent over the receipts, but Royal Mail has said any claim must be made by the sender and not the recipient.

Mr Townsend, 58, of the Kings Park Village, Braintree, said: “They’re just putting hurdles in your way.

“I have been told I have to send the receipts back to America for him to send them from there."

It is understood that 7,000 pieces of mail went missing over a period of at least eight years and a postman, who had been working at the Lakes Road depot in Braintree, was suspended late last year.

A Royal Mail spokesman said: “The investigation into the intentional delay of a quantity of mail is ongoing."