Exclusive – By Peter Devine
A DELIVERY driver has lost his job after he disrupted a funeral by parking illegally and running his engine outside Cheadle Parish Church.
The incident, which was described by the vicar conducting the service, Rev Rob Munro, ‘as the most appalling insensitivity in an individual’ he had ever witnessed, occurred after the driver halted the funeral by parking in the spot reserved for the hearse on Cheadle’s busy High Street.
Rev Munro who was speaking on behalf of the bereaved family, told the Stockport Mail, that despite repeated requests from the undertaker and by himself, the man singularly refused to move the vehicle, bringing disruption to the service and added distress to mourners.
Rev Munro explained:”We asked him in a courteous manner if he would mind moving his vehicle and/or drive round for five minutes so we could remove the coffin and allow the mourners to disembark from the cars and get into the church but without blinking he said ‘no’.
“Even the landlord at the White Hart pub, where he was making the delivery of soft drinks, asked him to move it, but he refused to budge.
“Not only that, but to add insult to injury, he kept the engine of his vehicle running, so I was forced to shout over the noise of it to be heard, as I led the grieving family into the church.”
The driver only moved from the spot shortly after the funeral service finished, some 45 minutes later.
Following the funeral, and on behalf of the bereaved family, Rev Munro sent a strongly worded letter of complaint to the delivery firm Kuehne+Nagel UK Drinks Division
A spokeswoman for Kuehne+Nagel told the Stockport Mail:”Our managing director has written to Rev Munro and sincerely apologised for the behaviour of the individual involved and the distress it caused the family.
“The incident has been taken very seriously and the individual has been dealt with through our disciplinary process and is no longer employed by us.
“Our local management team are speaking to Rev Munro to pass on our sincere apologies to the family and resolve any issues about future delivery access.”
Rev Munro added: “I deem this behaviour to have been completely and utterly unacceptable. He seriously added to the distress of the family who were already upset in their grief.I have never come across such disrespect of a bereaved family