'Mum's flowers were rubbish - what can I do?'

withered gerbera in white vase

This weekend, millions of us said it with flowers as we let our mums know just how much we appreciate them.

But what if your bouquet didn't send the right message at all? Last year, for example, Moonpig was deluged with complaints after delivering flowers that were damaged, late or failed to appear at all.

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Unfortunately, if this happens, there's no way of turning back time and getting the right thing delivered on the right day. However, under the Consumer Rights Act, companies do have certain obligations: we look at what to do if your Mother's Day flower delivery goes wrong.

If they're dead
If your flowers turn up dead or wilting, then they're not of satisfactory quality and you're entitled to a refund from the retailer. As with any problem it's the buyer who has to make the complaint. You should make sure a picture's been taken on arrival to prove your case, and as evidence if you need to take things further.

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If they're late
You'll need to check the website terms to make sure it includes a specific delivery date. Otherwise, even when an estimated date is given, the retailer has 30 days to deliver, meaning they could appear weeks after the important day. If the company's failed to deliver on or by a specified day you have the right to your money back. And even if it's the courier at fault it's the retailer you should approach, as your contract is with them.

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If flowers are missing
It's not unusual for a bouquet to appear that's pitiful compared with the picture. If, for example, you order a dozen red roses and only six arrive, you're entitled to a refund for the missing blooms - but, unfortunately, not for the whole bouquet.

If they're the wrong flowers
The picture showed a stunning mixed bouquet; your mother receives a bunch of carnations and dahlias. If the flowers aren't the colour or variety you were expecting, you're entitled to a full refund - as long as they don't fit the specification. If the small print says that colour and type can vary, you may be out of luck.

Gift ideas for grandparents
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Gift ideas for grandparents

Your grandparents may fall into the camp of those who have embraced ereaders and love them already. Alternatively, they may fall into the group of people who think there's nothing wrong with books.

If they fall into the latter camp, when you hand this over, remind them that they can scale up the font while they are reading, so they won't need reading glasses. Amazon is currently selling the Kindle Paperwhite (6” high resolution with back light and wifi) for £104.49.

This decorative tree comes with six frames, so grandparents can pick their favourite family members, and hang photos from the branches.

Alternatively, they can squeeze everyone on - or just the grandkids! It costs £24.00 from Gettingpersonal.co.uk.

It won't be the most beautiful gift you buy this year, but it might be the most practical. This big button phone is just £11.49 from Argos and is ideal for grandparents who are fed up with fiddling around with small buttons every time they want to make a call.
Janet Street Porter was apparently livid when she was given one of these as a ‘joke’ for her 70th birthday, but she’s missing a trick. If Alan 'Fluff' Freeman was happy to push one around London in his 70s, then we could all benefit from something pretty stylish that lightens the load. This one from John Lewis costs £55.
If they are a fan of the programme, then why not get your grandparents the game? They can follow the clues to find the celebrity's ancestors, and spark the traditional festive argument over a board game. This costs £20 from John Lewis.
You might have thought that the golf fan in your life had every bit of kit going, but do they have a washbag in the shape of a golf bag? At £15 from John Lewis, it's a fun addition to their ever-growing collection of golf-related memorabilia.

If you're lucky enough to have an awesome Nanny - and one who wears t-shirts - then buy her this, and let the world know how cool she is.

One Two Three T is selling them for £7.97 on Etsy (also available as Grandmother, Nana, Grandmother and Nona).

If your grandma deserves a bit of recognition for everything she does for her grandchildren, then this bag might be a good place to start.

Poppy and Petal Designs are selling it through Etsy for £12.45.

If you're buying for a green-fingered grandparent, then why not think beyond the usual bedding plants and get them a 'grow your own Prosecco' kit?

These are available for £38 through Not on the High Street, and promise to deliver a healthy grapevine (chosen for its ability to thrive in Britain and deliver grapes within a few years) - plus some personalised labels just in case they ever get to the winemaking stage.

If your grandparents are handy round the house, then you can celebrate their skills with a personalised mug.

You can add the name of the grandchild, plus whatever you call the grandparent in question, and they'll make a special mug for you. They are available through Not On The High Street for £16.


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