A Southend housewarming party was brought to a complete standstill on Friday evening when a guest asked for a hot cup of tea. 

Chloe and Michael Parker were hosting the gathering of around 50 people to celebrate moving into their new home in Fairfax Drive, and at around 8pm Michael started offering some drinks. 

Witness Kevin Turner said: ‘They had carefully laid out a wide variety of soft and alcoholic drinks on the dining room table – everything from Dr Pepper to Malibu to Stella Artois to Diet Vimto.’

‘Every possible cold drink need was catered for, when all of a sudden Chloe’s Auntie Margaret asked if she could have a ‘nice hot cup of tea.’ Within an instant, it was like you could cut the atmosphere with a knife in there.’

‘After a great deal of effort and rearranging appliances in the kitchen, a kettle was located, and when the hot mug emerged it just opened the floodgates – everyone else over the age of 50 decided that they fancied a nice hot cup of tea as well.’

‘It was like a scene off The Walking Dead when someone smells a ‘non-zombie’ and everyone else catches on.’

‘It was a terrible shame. Nobody saw the hosts for the rest of the night.’