Sheffield bride-to-be left £500 out of pocket

Thea Gallacher was left devastated after the company she had paid for her wedding dress went into administration.
Thea Gallacher was left devastated after the company she had paid for her wedding dress went into administration.
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A Sheffield bride-to-be has been left ‘horrified’ after losing £500 on her dream wedding dress.

Thea Gallacher, aged 21, of Symons Crescent, Southey Green, has been left out of pocket after wedding specialists Formal Affair went into administration.

She picked her perfect dress more than 10 months ago but was told over Christmas the firm had gone bust and her dress would not be arriving for her big day in May.

Hundreds of couples including many from Sheffield are now battling for full refunds after the West Midlands-based company had to shed 39 jobs.

The Formal Affair store on Castle Street in Sheffield city centre has closed its doors.

Thea, who is to marry fiancé Neil Rice, 29, at Whirlowbrook Hall in Whirlow on May 13, suspected something was wrong when she tried to contact the firm but got no response.

She has managed to find another wedding dress thanks to Rotherham bridal store Wed To Be – but fears others may not be so lucky.

Thea said: “When I first received the news I was horrified – the wedding is not too long away and the stress of finding a new dress and the alterations that come with it hasn’t been ideal.

“What makes this really upsetting is they kept taking money from me despite them knowing they would be going into administration – it’s unbelievable they can do that.

“It’s disgusting really. I’m not the only person this has happened to. It’s caused me no end of stress.”

Dean Nelson, head of business recovery and insolvency at Smith Cooper accountants, said the company had tried to cut costs and restructure.

He added: “We are currently in the process of assisting the company repatriate its stock to the head office with a view to a closing-down sale being instigated.

“Once appointed administrators, we will be in contact with creditors regarding the financial position of the company and dividend prospects.”