Haverhill: EuroMillions mum to reopen play centre

Rascals Playbarn (formerly Cheeky Chimps Funhouse in Haverhil).

Rascals Playbarn (formerly Cheeky Chimps Funhouse in Haverhil). - Credit: Archant

THE Suffolk couple who hit the £148million EuroMillions jackpot have announced they will bankroll the reopening of children’s play facilities near their home.

Adrian Bayford, and wife Gillian from Haverhill, Suffolk

Adrian Bayford, and wife Gillian from Haverhill, Suffolk - Credit: PA

Gillian Bayford, who scooped the lottery with her husband Adrian, yesterday said she was determined to use the cash to help children in the Haverhill area by resurrecting the Cheeky Chimps children’s play barn.

The former health care assistant at Addenbrooke’s, who revealed that 12 months ago she had struggled to pay for her two children, Aimee and Cameron, to have a birthday party at the play barn said she felt the time was right to step in. She added: “At the moment there’s nothing for children from Haverhill and the surrounding villages, we wanted to give them somewhere to go, we’re hoping to bring some fun back to Haverhill.”

Mrs Bayford will be personally involved in the project, attending the play barn - which closed in February - one or two days a week.

Speaking about the August lottery win, Mrs Bayford her family are still inundated with letters asking her for money that she continues to read.

Mrs Bayford added: “We do get a lot of letters but in this world you don’t ask, you don’t know. You can’t condemn anybody for asking. It takes a lot of guts just to ask somebody for money, to just to come out and say it. We still read every one of them and work out yes or no on their own merits.”

Mrs Bayford said despite taking a decision to close their music shop on Haverhill High Street, life had not changed dramatically since the win. She added: “There are no financial worries anymore and we’ve moved to a slightly larger house, but my main aims are still there: my friends, my family, my children – it doesn’t matter how much money you have in the bank, you wouldn’t be anybody without friends and family behind you.”

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Rascals Playbarn, run with Mrs Bayford’s friend Cindy Smith will open on May 4.