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Indian restaurant urged to solve mystery of diner who had been 'dead for 9 years'

Waiter at Indian restaurant saves choking customer with Heimlich manoeuvre

It sounds like a Netflix documentary in the making, but a widow is trying to find out how her late husband ended up at their local Indian restaurant nine years after his death.

Lucy Watson, 59, was watching a promotional video posted to Facebook by Spice Cottage when one of its diners caught her eye.

Instantly she was sure that the unassuming punter sitting eating his korma was none other than her husband Harry – even though he died almost a decade ago.

But for anyone thinking, “big deal? They probably used old footage?” here’s the kicker: the restaurant insists the clip was filmed a couple of weeks ago.

The popular curry house, located in the quaint village of Westbourne, West Sussex, uploaded the unintentionally explosive recording on 16 January, with the caption: “New year, new mood! For the last few weeks, we’ve been working hard to make our dining experience even more memorable.”

And memorable it most certainly has been.

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A shocked Watson responded to the post by asking: "How old is the footage? My late husband and his son were on the first shot and he died in 2014?"

It’s understood Harry is the bespectacled man in green here:

The man presumably had no idea a simple dinner at his local curry house could cause such a firey debateSpice Cottage

The restaurant replied by offering its condolences, then clarifying: “This footage was recorded last week [9 January]."

However, the widower was unconvinced and, taking her story to MailOnline insisted: "There was no doubt in my mind it was my husband. I couldn’t pause the thing so I had to replay it about 30 times and each time I was surer and surer."

The dispute has since travelled beyond the cosy West Sussex community, and has been picked up by news outlets across the world.

Everyone wants to see the mystery solved, with a number of viewers likening it to the true story-turned-ITV series The Thief, His Wife and The Canoe.

But Watson has dismissed the “ridiculous conspiracy theories” that continue to swirl around the video, instead accusing Spice Cottage of deliberately using old footage as a publicity stunt.

However, much like a good butter chicken sauce, the plot thickens. And the restaurant has fought back by offering evidence for its claims.

A new reply, posted on Monday, read: "I am writing on behalf of Spice Cottage as one of the managers. In regards to the incident regarding the Lucy Watson comment and her interview, we would like to clarify some misunderstandings.

"I run the social media side of the business and recorded a promotional video to portray our new wooden tables and interior refurbishment.

"The refurbishment was completed in early January 2023 and the promotional video highlights these changes.

"Before January 2023, all of our tables were covered by white and red cloths, henceforth it is evident this footage is recent. This is a very unusual situation and we hope this clarifies any confusion."

In a further boost to the defence, another key commentator has rubbished Watson’s theory.

Kiera Doherty, who claims to be Harry's daughter, wrote: "The person Lucy Watson is mentioning was my dad, Harry, and my brother. This is 100 per cent not him."

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