THE funeral of Ceres postman Robert McDougall, who died in a tragic motorcyle accident last week, was held on Wednesday.

Mr McDougall was travelling to begin his shift in Anstruther early last Thursday morning when the accident happened on the B940 Peat Inn to Crail road near Highham Toll bridge.

The 33-year-old, who became a postman three years ago, normally drove postal delivery vans around St Andrews, but after discovering he was to become a father for the first time, he changed his shift so he could spend more time with partner Faith Nicholson.

The alarm was raised after colleagues in Anstruther reported Mr McDougall had failed to turn up for work.The Nicholson family began a search of the area. He was found by a passer-by shortly after 6 a.m. and police were called.

It is thought Mr McDougall died instantly after colliding with roadside posts.

Originally from Glasgow, Mr McDougall had been engaged to Faith for nine years. They couple met at a Fife Flyers ice hockey match in Kirkcaldy 11 years ago and when Faith began a degree course at Edinburgh University, Mr McDougall became a mascot for Edinburgh Capitals ice hockey team, and they both became involved with the club's committee.

After working as a fitness instructor in Linlithgow and then with St Andrews University, Mr McDougall started work as a postman and had recently begun doing occasional shifts in Anstruther so he could have more time with Faith, who is due to give birth in seven week's time.

On the day the accident happened, the couple, of Buchanan Park, Cere, had been due to attend a parenting class at Forth Park hospital.

Faith's mother Jean Nicholson, of Ceres, said Mr McDougall had been "so looking forward to becoming a daddy".

Despite passing the motorcycle test a few years ago, he had only recently bought a bike, and according to Mrs Nicholson, probably didn't know the road to Anstruther particularly well.

Mrs Nicholson added Mr McDougall was like a son to her and many local people thought of him as 'Robert Nicholson'.

Mr McDougall's funeral was held at Kirkcaldy Crematorium on Wednesday and a collection was taken for the Children's Hospice Association Scotland (CHAS).

A spokesperson for Royal Mail said its thoughts were with Mr McDougall's family and friends.