National Lottery curse – couples who split up after winning jackpot
Winning the lottery and planning what we would spend our millions on is something many of us fantasise about.
But for those who have hit the jackpot and pocketed more cash than they can spend in a lifetime, it’s not always plain sailing.
In fact for some winners it’s left their relationships in tatters, caused heartbreak, seen flings and even divorces.
One couple to have been hit by the National Lottery ‘curse’ is Gareth and Catherine Bull, from Nottinghamshire who won a whopping £40.6m in 2012.
Last year, it was reported that the pair were living in separate homes and Catherine had been snapped without her wedding ring.
Another tell-tale sign their relationship was on the rocks was that they were no longer Facebook friends.
A bar boss then sensationally claimed former brick-layer Gareth whisked her off her feet in a fling behind his wife’s back, using the chat up line " Google me."
Mum-of-four Donna Desporte claimed Gareth used his vast wealth to woo her on a boozy night out in Tenerife.
She said he repeatedly told her “Google me. Google Me” after she brushed him off as a lying “fruitcake” when he told her about his huge lottery win.
She said it was the start of a nine-month passionate fling in which Gareth, splashed out on 48-year-old Donna.
He even took her to a £1,500 night at the BAFTAS for her birthday and forked out on ringside seats at Anthony Joshua boxing matches.
She claims the dad-of-two was desperate to keep their romance from his wife of 20 years, Catherine.
Donna says Gareth told her they were in the middle of a two-year separation and was worried Catherine, 40, would “use” the relationship against him if she found out.
It’s not known if Gareth and Catherine did divorce.
Another couple to split was Adrian and Gillian Bayford, who won £148m in 2012.
They called it a day 15 months later, citing the pressure of their win as part of the reason.
A statement released on behalf of Gillian confirmed that the eight-year marriage had broken down “irretrievably”.
Adrian reportedly moved out of the family home, to a £500,000 house, with a built-in leisure complex and a six car garage.
He denied rumours that an affair ended their marriage.
He said at the time: “Look, me and Gillian are getting along fine. We’re fine and everything that’s been printed is just rubbish.
“There have been rumours for months and none of it has been true, its all rubbish. We have separated now but we get on fine.
“We have kids and we still get along and talk to each other. We’re all happy now and life goes on.”
Gillian also denied cheating on her husband.
She said: “We are not splitting up. We aren’t any different to the way we were before.
“Every woman goes out and does their bits and pieces. But that does not mean I am having an affair.”
In March 2014, it was reported that Adrian was engaged to Samantha Burbidge after a six-week relationship.
But the dad-of-two hit the headlines again when fiancée Samantha walked out on him in January 2017.
He was then reportedly dumped by his latest lover Lisa Kemp, 40, earlier in June 2018.
Meanwhile, Les and Samantha Scadding, who won £45.5m in 2009, split up in 2013.
Unemployed mechanic Les Scadding, then 58, and his wife Samantha Peachey-Scadding, then 38, from Caerleon, South Wales, bought one of two winning tickets which shared a £90m jackpot.
Grandfather Mr Scadding was £68 overdrawn on his bank account on the day he bought his lucky ticket and had also beaten testicular cancer.
But sadly, the relationship came to an end.
The lottery win also signalled the end of Jason and Victoria Jones’ relationship. They had been married for only a month when they bought their winning ticket with the last pound coin in her purse.
They scooped £2.3million in 2004.
But 12 years after their jackpot win the pair said it ‘ruined their lives’ and they wish they had never won.
The couple bought their own luxury home, a £70,000 sports car and started up an impressive property portfolio in Devizes, Wiltshire.
But the couple have been the latest victims to succumb the so-called "lottery curse".
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At the time, Victoria said it was "one of the worst things that’s ever happened to me."
She added: "The stress it gives you in life and even 12 years down the line, I’m still classed as a lottery winner and it’s horrible. It ruins your life. People treat you differently – it’s just not a nice thing."
Meanwhile, Michael Carroll – who called himself the ‘King of Chavs’ after winning £9.7m on the lottery in 2002 – also ended up splitting up with his wife.
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