Money makes the world go around

15 08 2012

Watching the lunchtime news yesterday I saw a report about a British couple who won £148 million in the lottery. Gillian and Adrian Bayford looked a little overwhelmed but were beaming at each other as they spoke about their win – the second biggest jackpot ever meaning they are now the 516th on this list of the richest people in Britain.

Their plans to spend the money are fairly modest given the amount of money involved. They want to spend more time together with their family and take a trip to Disney Land. He will stay at work and expand his business whereas she plans to give up her job as a care worker at a children’s hospital where she does shift work. They are also going to buy a new home and car and share their winnings with close friends and family.

Their immediate plans are fairly similar to what I would place on my own wish list and I started thinking about what I would do with a staggering £148 million in the bank. It is a fantasy we all must indulge in from time to time. Money does not bestow you with magic powers but it can open up a world of opportunities. Being without it can be a major source of stress when bills are mounting up and can tear relationships and families apart.

The Bayford’s desire to share their winnings with people they care about is certainly admirable and will hopefully mean that they will not only benefit personally but can provide their loved ones with a better quality of life. They have the potential to touch so many lives and will no doubt receive countless begging letters with requests for a share of their winnings.

Not all lottery winners live happily ever after. I discovered the following blog listing 10 winners whose experience was less than positive:

I would love to win. I hate lottery winners who say it won’t change their lives, if that is genuinely true, GIVE IT BACK!!! The immediate and somewhat predictable things I would like to do are buy a house, pay off my car, go on an extended luxury holiday with my husband and send extremely large cheques to my immediate family.

I would also in no particular order: Leave my job, travel more, see more theatre, films & concerts, own lots of expensive footwear, learn to ballroom dance, visit spas for pampering days and eat at upmarket restaurants.  I am not sure if I would invest in expensive toys like my own private jet or yacht but I would indulge my husband’s love of technology with a new computer, IPAD and as many games consoles as his heart desires.

Another appeal of winning is the ability to make a difference in a larger sense. I could donate to charities of my choice, set up a scholarship fund, donate money for a purpose built Drama Studio in my school and provide a trophy recognising achievement in my subject area on awards evening. Following my own experience of the quest for home ownership I could buy property and rent our affordable homes or set up a program to help people get onto the property ladder. I could put money into projects in my local community.

The possibilities are endless and that is the appeal of winning the lottery.

I’m off to buy a ticket and who knows maybe the next draw will be the one and I can start ticking off some of the things on my list.