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When you win that BIG Lottery Jackpot, should you go public? The Diary of a Lottery Winner

When you DO win the lottery and decide to go public, what happens? UK Jackpot Hunter’s website FindmeaJackpot has followed the media frenzy around the UK’s most recent big Euromillions Jackpot winners - Adrian and Gillian Bayford from Suffolk, who won £148 million on August 10th 2012.

Adrian and Gillian zoomed into second place in The National Lottery Rich List with their £148 million win, just behind Colin and Chris Weir from Largs who remain at the top of the list with their jackpot of £161,653,000 won in July 2011.

When their win was announced, Jan Moir of the Daily Mail commented on the decision to go public: "Camelot advises winners of huge amounts to do exactly this — and not just for the publicity it engenders for them. Apparently, the strain of keeping your new millions a secret from friends, family and the world at large is an even worse ordeal than being splashed all over the news.”

So if you find yourself with this (great!) problem of going public or not, what happens? Here's what happened to Adrian and Gillian:

Friday August 10th – You find out you win!

Late on Friday August 10th Adrian Bayford joked with his wife Gillian that they should have bought some Euromillions tickets for the £148 million draw. But he HAD bought five tickets which he checked on his phone and then told the wife and kids.

The couple then called family members to share the good news, having given up on getting the children back to bed. Gillian said “Everyone was very surprised to hear from us so late at night and thought we were joking at first. It took us a while to make them believe us!”

Saturday August 11th – You claim the prize

The couple claim the prize with the National Lottery, but Camelot claim that they have not decided whether to take publicity or not according to the Sun.

Tuesday 14th August – You go public

Adrian and Gillian are revealed as the £148 million winners in a National Lottery press conference with photo shoots and TV interviews. They were keeping their identity a secret until today and after posing for the cameras, the pair were flown away by helicopter to a secret location.

Mr Bayford, 41, said he would carry on running his music shop in Haverhill, Suffolk, which he opened 17 years ago. She said she would now treat herself to her dream car, an Audi Q7. Her husband said he had always wanted to visit the Canadian Rockies by train, and the children want to go to Disney World.

Mrs Bayford added: "Children's charities are close to our hearts so we will be exploring how we can use this money to help those charities but it is too soon to say exactly what."

Wednesday August 15th – More publicity and the press invade your home town

As the National Lottery publicity machine goes into high gear, expect more press reports as further details are revealed:

The press go to the Bayford's home town in Haverhill to get reaction from locals: Fari Nafi said: “Adrian loves his food and comes here twice a week for a king-size burger and chips. He is a nice guy and deserves his win.”

Also expect at this point for the press to show pictures of your current house. So everybody now knows how much you've won, which town you live in and what your house looks like!

Thursday August 16th - Friends start to comment:

The Daily Record publishes a story where Adrian’s best friend Richard Hudspith, 39, says: “They met when Adrian dialed the wrong number and got through to Gillian. But it went from there. They fell in love and eventually Gillian moved down.”

Friday August 17th - Expect to be followed by the press!

The Bayfords hit the news again as they CONTINUE to buy lottery tickets, according to the Scottish Sun who say:

“LOADED EuroMillions winner Adrian Bayford dipped into his £148million fortune yesterday — to buy TWO MORE lottery tickets.”

So lottery winners are followed by the press and paparazzi take your photo for days after the announcement, so don't do anything stupid!

Saturday August 18th - You go on holiday to escape the press and friends continue to talk to the press

THE £148million lottery winners have flown off on holiday reports the Sun — paying £130 on EasyJet.

A pal said: “They just wanted to get away and let it all sink in. They opted for £130 single seat flights and will come back when things have calmed down.”

Sunday August 19th - You start considering security arrangements

The Sun says LOTTERY mega-millionaires Gillian and Adrian Bayford have been advised to hire close protection bodyguards — for their KIDS. The couple have been warned by Camelot that Aimee, six, and Cameron, four, could be kidnap targets for organised gangs.

Camilla Tominey in the Express commented:
" (Lottery winners).. don’t mind people knowing they have won £148 million because they didn’t think they could give money away and expect people to keep quiet about it I’ve kindly given you all their details so that you can track them down easily to ask for a handout. You might not be the only person doing this. I have a feeling one of the first tasks for the Bayfords will be to set up a national helpline for hapless lottery winners who don’t receive decent advice.”

Friday 24th August - The press pick you up as you come back from holiday

The Mail says Adrian Bayford has been flooded with letters from all over the world asking for a piece of his £148 million jackpot. Some of the letters had been hand delivered by people travelling from France and Germany. He also confirmed that he plans to stay in Haverhill, Suffolk, but that special security arrangements will be made to protect their children.

Saturday August 25th - You try to return to normality

LOTTERY multi-millionaire Adrian Bayford returned to work – and “normality” – yesterday after returning from holiday, according to The Express.
One of his first jobs was sorting through the sacks of mail asking for financial help which have arrived since the huge win was revealed.
Apparently there were 400 begging letter and Adrian read them all! I am not sure I would!

And doesn’t end there!

The press will report how you spend your money and any interesting tidbits of what’s happening in your life. World Record lottery winners Christine and Colin Weir are still in the limelight over a year after they won their Euromillions Jackpot. Their PR is now so slick that I suspect they have professional help handling the press, and if I for one had won £148 million I would seriously consider doing such a thing myself!

Since their initial weeks in the limelight, the Bayfords have been back in the press for buying a £6 million Downton Abbey style mansion and for stopping work. So if you go public you are now a “celebrity” and all your doings – good and bad – are open for public scrutiny.

After seeing what the Bayfords went through the team at FindmeaJackpot would stay anonymous and take my chances!

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