It’s a blooming miracle - taxman says sorry to Aylmerton woman with bouquet and £50

The flowers sent by HMRC to Jeannie Zelos. Picture: JEANNIE ZELOS

The flowers sent by HMRC to Jeannie Zelos. Picture: JEANNIE ZELOS - Credit: Archant

A new widow whose stresses were made worse because of errors by the tax office, was flabbergasted when HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) admitted their mistakes and sent her a bouquet of flowers and £50 to say 'sorry.'

The note accompanying Jeannie Zelos's flowers. Picture: JEANNIE ZELOS

The note accompanying Jeannie Zelos's flowers. Picture: JEANNIE ZELOS - Credit: Archant

Jeannie Zelos, 58, had been pulling her hair out for months trying to sort out mistakes involving her benefit entitlements and tax code, involving many upsetting and frustrating phone calls and letters to HMRC officials.

After a final apologetic phone call from HMRC to explain what action had been taken, the problems were eventually resolved.

Mrs Zelos, of Holt Road, Aylmerton, thought that was an end to it - until the flowers arrived, accompanied by a note which read: 'With compliments HM Revenue and Customs.' A cheque followed soon after.

She said: 'I'd have been happy just to have my tax code corrected.

Jeannie Zelos

Jeannie Zelos - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2006

'I was really pleased they took the trouble to ring and explain what was going on and then to get this was a real shock and a nice bonus.'

Wheelchair user Mrs Zelos, who is an amputee, had been married to her husband Charles for 40 years.

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He was diagnosed with terminal cancer in March and died 10 days later, leaving his family, including three grown-up children, in huge shock and distress.

He had also acted as Mrs Zelos's carer for the past few years and, following his death, she found herself filling in multiple forms and trying to re-arrange her finances to face the future alone.

The Inland Revenue mistakes added to her grief but she had been pleased when eventually a sympathetic staff member rang to sort things out and apologise.

During her battle with the Inland Revenue Mrs Zelos had enlisted the support of North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb.

In a reply to his letter, an HMRC official again apologised for adding to Mrs Zelos's troubles at a difficult time and said they would be sending the flowers and cheque.

'I was quite taken aback by the human touch from HMRC!' said Mr Lamb.

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