Two mourners were shocked to be handed £80 fines for littering as they attended the funeral of a friend.

Ann Bentley and John Harpur labelled the actions of council enforcement officers “disgusting” – with one officer even pursuing Ann inside a funeral home.

They were each given a fixed penalty notice (FPN) for leaving cigarette butts in plant pots by the doorway of the building after the two officers had seemingly “lay in wait” outside.

Ann and John visited the Alderson & Horan funeral home in Burnley last Thursday after the death of their close friend Dougie Wise, 73.

The pair intended meeting fellow mourners, including Dougie’s family from Oxford, before following the funeral cortege from the home to Burnley Cemetery.

But as they smoked outside CCTV shows how they attracted the attention of two council enforcement officers who’d parked their car on the other side of the road.

As Ann and John finish their cigarettes, the officers jump out of the car and run across the road - with one chasing after Ann through the entrance of the home - before issuing the fines.

“John and I had just wanted a quick cigarette before going inside the funeral home,” said Ann.

“We finished smoking and left the butts in two plant containers by the doorway and out of nowhere the two enforcement officers appeared.

“They must have lay in wait because they came after us so fast.

“One officer spoke to John first and accused us of littering, saying we’d dropped our butts on the pavement and not in the plant pots.

“I’d already gone inside by this point but the other officer just came chasing after me.

“I couldn’t believe it when she told me I was being handed a £80 fine.”

Ann added: “I think it’s disgusting the way we were treated. How low can you go picking on mourners at a funeral?”

John, 68, who also attended the funeral of his mother last Monday, said the enforcement officers had refused to listen when he said the cigarette butts had not been dropped on the floor.

“I’m disgusted they chose to hang around outside a funeral home,” he added.

“I’ve sent a strongly-worded letter to the council and I expect the two enforcement officers to be disciplined.”

Steve Alderson, manager of the funeral home, also slammed the “over-the-top” actions of the two officers.

“How can it be littering when those plant pots belong to us?” he said. “They’re private property.

“Fining mourners, who may already be traumatised by losing a friend or a relative, isn’t good.

“It’s shocking one of the officers decided to chase after Ann inside the home.

“It’s so disrespectful and I’ve told the council exactly how I feel.”

Burnley Council has since apologised and cancelled the fines.

A spokesman said: "We resolved this situation as soon as we were made aware of the matter and, in accordance with our procedures, the FPNs were immediately cancelled.

"We apologise to the two people involved for any upset this caused and we've sent flowers to Ann as a way of saying 'sorry'."