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FUNERAL FIRMS IN FIGHT OVER CORPSE.

A grieving widow says she was plagued by an undertaker desperate to clinch her husband's funeral.

The firm rang five times and sent a funeral director to Sarah O'Conner's house, offering to slash their price by pounds 400 to try to beat a rival.

Sarah, 62, was left distraught by the company's squabbling over husband Hugh's body.

She said last night: "They were more like double glazing salesmen than professional undertakers. I felt like I was auctioning my husband."

The great-gran, of Carntyne, Glasgow, was devastated when Hugh died of heart and lung problems. DSS bosses advised her to shop around for a burial quote.

Robert Davidson Funeral Directors in Whitevale Street, Dennistoun - who are owned by Co-operative Funeral Services - offered a price of pounds 1600.

McLean's Funeral Services in nearby Alexandra Parade quoted pounds 1200.

But Davidson's offered to drop their price when Sarah told them she was using McLean's.

They sent a funeral director to her home in a last-ditch attempt to clinch the deal. Sarah said: "If they could afford to knock pounds 400 off my bill then they are obviously charging people too much in the first place."

Her son, William McInally, 43, said: "I told Davidson's we had decided to go elsewhere but they would not back down.

"They phoned me back a few minutes later and offered to cut pounds 400 off their bill to match McLean's.

"They kept pestering us. They made five phone calls then they sent an undertaker up anyway.

"We had two undertakers in the house, which was very awkward."

William asked Davidson's to leave. He added: "The firm behaved like cut- throat businessmen."

Bosses of the funeral firm promised a probe. A Co-op spokesman said: "It's not our policy to harangue people."
COPYRIGHT 1998 Scottish Daily Record & Sunday
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1998 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Author:Page, Cara
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jan 26, 1998
Words:293
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