A BRIDE-TO-BE who bought her dream dress from a shop which then suddenly closed has been hit with a second blow after her wedding insurer refused to pay out.

Lucy Wilcox, 26, lost £1,300 and the promise of four dresses when Fabulous Brides by Layla, in Hamlet Court Road, Westcliff, ceased trading earlier this month.

Miss Wilcox, who has a son Kai, seven, had paid on a debit card for two bridesmaid dresses, a dress for herself for her registry office ceremony and a bespoke tafata gown for a Pagan handfasting ceremony.

But when the shop closed, her dream wedding in Brentwood on October 29 was left in tatters.

Her fiance, Jonathan Valentine, 23, said: “We are livid.

“She went to the shop and it was empty then we were told about the story in the Echo.

“My fiancee is under enough stress organising a wedding, working full time and she has ME. This affected her badly and left her with no energy and for two days she could barely function.

“Then, when we tried to claim through our wedding insurance, we were told unless we could prove the firm had gone out of business and was insolvent rather than just not trading our claim would not be covered.

“Their search found the shop is still registered as active with Companies House.

“It’s just devastating. We want to warn other couples to make sure their wedding insurance policy covers for all possibilities not just insolvency of suppliers.”

The couple are furious the policy wording was not clearer.

They have since discovered their insurer had not searched the individual insolvency register, only Companies House.

Layla Ringwood, who set up the shop in September last year, is listed on the website as bankrupt and her case was listed at Southend County Court on October 8.

Miss Wilcox and Mr Valentine are now waiting to hear back from their insurer.

The Echo reported earlier this month how Melissa Drake, 33, paid £950 for her gown from Fabulous Brides by Layla, but the shop was shut when she went for her first fitting.

An answerphone message at the shop states it has had to cease trading: “Due to unforeseen circumstances and health reasons.”

However Mr Valentine, of West Street, Southend, questioned this.

He said: “About two months before she had a cancer scare, but then said everything was fine and back to normal.

“Thanks to the wonderful people at Chantilly Lace they have saved our wedding with a new dress, but the original dress was a gift from family and the money has been lost.”