Serial mourners caught out crashing Alan Coren's funerals
December 23, 2008 11:00pm
A GROUP has been caught attending memorial services of people they didn't know, in scenes straight out of the hit movie Wedding Crashers.
The serial mourners gave themselves access to free booze, food and company until being exposed in an elaborate sting.
After the death of UK journalist Alan Coren, his daughter Victoria advertised his memorial service in newspapers.
But a mysterious email warned her to "beware a certain Terence Jolley", who often attended services for people he didn't know.
Jolley had applied to attend the service and claimed he had worked with Coren at the BBC.
An internet search revealed he was a former magistrate who had been convicted of transport fraud.
Further investigation revealed a whole gang who had written to say they would attend the service had given fake identities and addresses.
To catch them out, Ms Coren invented a character called Sir William Ormerod and set up a website listing his engineering and arts achievements.
Within hours of advertising Sir William's memorial service, she received emails from "the Hon Terence Jolley and Terence Jolley (Sr)" and four other couples. "We knew him from his work and support of the arts centre," the Jolleys wrote.
In the 2005 comedy Wedding Crashers, Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn crash weddings and funerals to pick up women.
Ms Coren used her evidence to ban Jolley from her father's memorial service but let the others in the gang attend.
"They all arrived promptly at the party afterwards and dug into the sandwiches," she said.
Jolley admitted RSVPing for "friends" and was furious to be barred, saying he was just honouring people he admired.
Edited by X-Files, 23 December 2008 - 1839 PM.