A PENSIONER was shocked to receive a cheque for more than £1.5 million when she applied for a £33 tax rebate.

Elizabeth Jenkins, 86, from Bournemouth, told a national Sunday newspaper she phoned HM Revenue and Customs after spotting they had taken £33 from her account incorrectly.

They promised a refund, but when, six months later, she had still not received it, she called again to chase up the matter.

Elizabeth was told that a cheque had been sent – and cashed – but records showed it had been sent to the wrong person at the wrong address.

Officials promised to send another cheque, but the widowed mum-of-two was left stunned when it eventually arrived on her doormat – because it was made out for £1,511,533.80.

Retired civil servant Elizabeth hasn’t cashed it, but said she was still waiting for the right amount.

She said: “I’m sure that if the roles were reversed and I had owed them money for over a year I’d probably be in jail now.

“They would hound me and hound me until I paid it back. So I’m going to hound them.”

An HMRC spokesman said: “We handle huge numbers of tax repayments and unfortunately things sometimes go wrong.

“When they do we apologise and sort things out as quickly as possible.”