A SOFA company which demanded £100 to cancel an 81-year-old great-grandmother’s order for a three-piece-suite after she died has apologised.
Rosa Irwin’s four sons branded Land of Leather ‘grave robbers’ for taking the £100 administration fee out of a £350 cash deposit paid by their late mother.
But after The Chronicle contacted the firm’s head office yesterday (Thursday), a company director apologised and promised to investigate why the Chester Greyhound Park store billed the family.
Retail director Peter Ling said it is company policy to give a full refund when a customer dies.
Mrs Irwin, 81, of Newtown, ordered a leather three-piece suite from the Greyhound Park store in July, to be delivered when she went into hospital for a knee operation in August.
Her sons also planned a surprise makeover on her home in St Anne’s Flats, Newtown, so she could recuperate in comfort.
Sadly, she died from a pulmonary embolism a week after the operation at the Countess of Chester Hospital.
Her son Jeremy, of Blacon, contacted the sofa shop the day after her death and was told they would refund the full deposit.
He said: ‘Then on the day of the funeral they called me again to say the sofa had arrived in stock. It turned out they hadn’t even cancelled the order properly.
‘After the shock of losing our mum so suddenly, and then having such an insensitive call on the day of the funeral, we were really upset.’
This week Jeremy contacted the company again to chase up the deposit refund, only to be told there was a £100 administration fee.
He said: ‘I think it is disgusting that these grave robbers would charge a dead woman £100. My mum would be really upset if she knew what was happening.
‘We have had to contact a lot of companies and everyone else has been really sympathetic and sensitive, but it is outrageous the way they have treated us.’
Mr Ling said: ‘Obviously at such a time the last thing a family needs is something like this. We will conduct a full investigation and I will be contacting the family to apologise and explain what happened.’