A man who has quietly lived with cancer for almost three decades threw his own "fake wake" on Saturday in order to reminisce with friends while he is still alive.

Retired Helston accountant Ken Brown was diagnosed with the disease 28 years ago and decided that, rather than his family and friends gathering after his passing, he wanted to be there to do it with them.

This led to a "fake wake" being attended by around 70 guests, at which 90-year-old Ken, a founding member of Kitchen & Brown in Coinagehall Street, was guest of honour.

They spent the afternoon chatting and sharing memories with friends, while his wife Tessa and their children and grandchildren kept everyone fed and the drinks flowing.

Helston Rotary Club president Brian Curtis, who has been supported by Ken through his own cancer treatment over the last two years, described him as an "extraordinary man, who is loved by many."

He said: "Ken took the brave decision to invite friends and family round to his house in Helston to celebrate his life. It's a brave man that asks people to tell him, what they think of him.

"I heard many tales about Ken, whether it be yachting, holidaying or his time in Helston. He has led a full and vibrant life with a loving family and good friends.

"Ken and Tessa were both very tired at the end of the wake and hopefully know the wealth of love that we all hold them in."

Ken has been a member of Helston Rotary Club for a number of decades and Mr Curtis said he had "given tirelessly his time, money and experience over the years."

He added: "Ken and Tessa are an amazing couple who are held in the highest regard by a huge number of people in the area."

Speaking to the Packet, Ken said: "I'm getting old and I like parties. Rather than give all those thirsty friends of mine booze at my wake, I would prefer to be present!

"I thought I would have a fake wake and fill the house up, and see how it goes - and it went very well."

Ken arrived in Helston on a rainy February day in 1951 and, in his own words, thought: "My God, what have I done?"

He soon realised the joys of the town, however, adding: "I was very quickly taken into the local society; they were very kind and I had a very warm welcome.

"I married and settled down here ever since. Helston is a very nice town to live in, with very friendly people."