A MAN was puzzled why people kept calling him by a different name – until he discovered he had a doppelganger.
Retired priest Neil Richardson bumped into his identical stranger twin John Jemison when they both went on a coach trip.
The duo discovered that apart from their looks, they shared a number of striking similarities – and lived half a mile apart.
It all started when Neil moved to Braintree, Essex, with his wife Marion a few years ago.
He was puzzled when locals would say hello or wave and everyone called him John.
At one point, Neil even had to show a cafe owner his credit card to prove he wasn't John.
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He said: "I realised the café owner always called me John.
"But when I explained my name wasn't John he just wouldn't believe me."
It took over a year for the two strangers, who lived half a mile apart, to finally bump into each other.
They met when they both went on the same coach trip to the British Museum in London.
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Apart from the obvious similarities in physical appearance, the two men discovered they also had led similar lives.
They have the same mannerisms, both love poetry, and used to teach religious education.
They had both studied at the College of St Mark and St John, Chelsea, in the 1960s.
Bizarrely, they both proposed to their wives after just two weeks of meeting them.
And they each have four grandchildren and sing in choirs.
Neil said: "Other people say we're like twins.
"I can see the likenesses, but he's slightly taller, and I'm slightly fatter."
Former school headteacher John admitted his wife Jenny did a double take the first time she saw them together.
He added: "My only worry is the number of people who probably think I've been ignoring them when they've been saying 'Hello John' to Neil all this time."
Neil describes their shared traits as an "accident of fate", but there is actually another reason for their similarities.
The duo participated in a test as part of a documentary and discovered they shared a facial match of 90 per cent.
The test also revealed they share a distant ancestor.
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Meanwhile another man was left in shock when he discovered not only that he had a doppelganger but he also had the same name and life as him.
And a woman took a DNA test after she found three strangers who looked exactly like her.
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