An extraordinary row over an Indian restaurant’s promotional video deepened today when a widow insisted the clip showed her husband eating his favorite chicken korma – even though he’s been dead for nine years.
Lucy Watson unknowingly caused a storm on the internet after she posted that the footage showed her late husband Harry Doherty having dinner with his son Alex at Spice Cottage near her home in Emsworth, West Sussex.
The post on the restaurant’s Facebook page sparked a flood of messages from social media users who bombarded the site with theories about the bizarre mystery.
Some compared the sighting to the case of canoeist John Darwin, who faked his own death as a life insurance scam.
But the restaurant stands its ground, insisting that the footage, which was posted on Jan. 16, was taken just days earlier.
The extraordinary row over an Indian restaurant’s promotional video deepened today when a widow insisted the clip showed her husband eating his favorite chicken Korma – even though he’s been dead for nine years. Lucy Watson unknowingly caused a storm on the internet after she posted that the footage showed late husband Harry Doherty (pictured with his wife) having dinner with his son Alex at the Spice Cottage near her home in Emsworth , West Sussex
But now Ms Watson, 59, has dismissed the ‘ridiculous conspiracy theories’ surrounding her comment and revealed the identity of her ‘instantly recognisable’ husband – an award-winning journalist and popular larger-than-life local character.
A father of three, Mr Doherty was born in Northern Ireland and won accolades for his coverage of the Troubles before moving to England where he revived his career as a music journalist working for the now-defunct magazine Melody Maker .
He went on to start his own rock magazine and became a friend of Queen guitarist Brian May after writing an official book about the band.
May sent flowers to the writer’s funeral after he died in April 2014.
Ms Watson, 59, has come forward to dismiss the ‘ridiculous conspiracy theories’ surrounding her post and reveal the identity of her ‘instantly recognisable’ husband – who was an award-winning journalist and a popular larger-than-life character in the area
The video was posted on the venue’s Facebook page, where Ms Watson commented: ‘How old are the images? My late husband and his son are on the first shot and he died in 2014??’ A response from the restaurant read, “Hi Lucy, sorry to hear this. This footage was shot last week’
Lucy was shocked by the viral response to her comment after watching the video, where diners are seen feasting on meals as waiters serve them. It ends with a round of applause for the staff.
After asking how old the video was, a restaurant, which is near the market town of Chichester, replied: ‘Hi Lucy, sorry to hear this. This footage was recorded last week.’
Ms Watson told MailOnline: ‘I don’t really use Facebook except to spy on friends or catch up with people. I was scrolling and the video popped up.
“The moment I saw the thing I was like ‘Oh my God – that’s Harry’. It was so direct. I didn’t even have to think. He’d eat a chicken korma because that’s all he’s ever eaten.’
“I had no doubt it was my husband. I couldn’t pause the thing, so I had to replay it about 30 times and each time I was more and more confident.
Father of three, Mr Doherty, who was born in Northern Ireland, won accolades for his coverage of the Troubles before moving to England where he revived his career as a music journalist working for the now-defunct magazine Melody Maker
“Harry was a big, characterful man. He has white hair. His posture and his glasses are distinctive. I recognized the blue sweatshirt he was wearing and he’s sitting there with his son Alex.
“I just thought, ‘That’s an old video.’ I posted asking how old the statues were.
“I only asked out of interest – then things went wild. I was annoyed when they sent back a message that it was filmed last week. It couldn’t have been.
‘They’re never that busy again, that’s the problem. They obviously posted this to generate customers because they are really running into it now.
‘There’s a fairly new Indian restaurant trying to get a Michelin star. There’s an old fashioned one I go to, a nice cheap one and another one that’s very trendy.
“They just don’t get that many people in there anymore. I think they picked and chose from different videos. I’m sure it’s a montage.
It’s the only explanation I can come up with.
“I am totally stunned by the response. I don’t understand how people have picked it up this way to be honest and there are all these crazy theories.
Harry died in 2014, there’s no doubt about that.
“He has been seriously ill in hospital for the past few months. They were supposed to do a liver transplant, but he didn’t make it.
“He was as skinny as anything before he died, so the video must have been taken several months before.”
Mr Doherty was Lucy’s second husband and she says she has lost contact with his son Alex, 39, since his father’s death.
Last night Rofiqul Islam, the manager of Spice Cottage, insisted that the footage was shot two weeks ago
However, last night Rofiqul Islam, Spice Cottage’s manager, insisted that the footage was shot two weeks ago.
He said the restaurant looked different in 2014 and the tables seen in the video were delivered just days before it was uploaded.
He said, ‘We’ve got new tables and they’re in the video. It’s quite an unusual situation.’