A BIZARRE row has broken out over flowers for a funeral after a grieving family complained the flower dog they bought, arrived with five legs.

Magaret Seaman, 76, of Delaware Road, Shoebury, had known 91-year-old Peggy Hartman for 50 years until she passed away on January 20.

Her funeral took place on Monday and Mrs Seaman clubbed together with her family to buy a £60 flower arrangement in the shape of a Jack Russell, for dog-loving Peggy.

However, when the flowers arrived at St Mary The Virgin Church, in North Shoebury Road, pall bearers were said to be laughing at the arrangement, which looked to have five legs and a snout.

Mrs Seaman said: “It was very upsetting and embarrassing.

“My daughter was waving for me to go over because the pall bearer started laughing at the flowers.

“One of them said ‘we’ve been trying to work out what sort of dog it is, I’ve never seen one with five legs before’.

“I’d known Peggy since she moved in to Delaware Crescent when I lived there too, she lived for her animals.

“We have laughed about it all since the funeral but on the day it was upsetting.

“My son went in to ask for a refund, not for the materials but for the labour, and they said no – we wanted to give the money to Battersea Dogs Home as Peggy had asked for either flowers or donations to the home.

“I wish we’d just given the home the money now.”

The florist, from Harlequin Flowers, in Ness Road, defended her work though, saying she had photographic evidence of how the dog looked when it was being delivered to funeral directors S. Stibbards and Sons, also in Ness Road.


The florists' photo of the flowers, shortly before it left the shop

She said: “It has been tampered with.

“I am a very highly trained professional and there is no way in this world I would let something out of my shop looking like that.

“I took a photo of the dog, as I do with all our arrangements, as it was on the way to the funeral directors over the road and you can see how it looked – it didn’t have five legs.”

S. Stibbards and Sons confirmed they were responsible for the flowers’ transport to the church, but no-one was available to make an official comment.