£148m Lottery winner furious when friends go to the papers about rent dispute

Sarah Coles
EuroMillions winners
EuroMillions winners

Adrian Bayford, who won £148 million on the Euromillions with his ex-wife Gillian in 2012, has let rip on Facebook, after falling out with a friend over money. Kym Mills and her daughter Keera took their story to the newspapers last week, and Adrian has posted a series of angry messages about it.

Kym was originally friends with Adrian and Gillian, when she ran the shop next to theirs. When the Bayfords won the jackpot, they offered Kym a job as a cleaner, and a rented home near their Suffolk mansion - for £500 a month.

The friendship continued without public exposure, until Kym and Keera went to the papers last week. They said there had been a falling out, and then shortly afterwards, Adrian had increased the rent to £750 a month. When they couldn't afford to pay the extra, he served them with an eviction notice.

In the original reports, Adrian made it clear that the market rent for the property was £1,400, so he was still offering them a great deal.


Since then, the situation has deteriorated even further. The day after the report, Adrian took to Facebook to outline details he said were incorrect in the original report. This was followed by a stream of angry Facebook posts, reprinted by the Daily Mail, which they say were posted on Adrian's page, and then later deleted.

They included one saying: "Yes I've been very fortunate in my life, I try and help as many as I can but I don't want one/two/three bad penny's spoiling my life, sadly looks like they are trying, sadly for them I don't take no **** and like it's said all fair in love and war, and ****** hell the war has only just started lol."

He then posted: "People who go to the papers about me, better be ready for what the papers will find out about them, let the war begin lol!!!"

Falling out with friends

Only those involved in this situation can be sure of all the details, but what is very clear from this news is how careful we have to be before getting involved in financial arrangements with friends.

Of course, most of us couldn't begin to afford to buy a property and rent it to friends, but as house prices continue to rise, there are plenty of people who buy property with a friend - just as there are plenty of people who have lent money to their friends.

In many cases we don't think twice before helping someone out. However, if we are to avoid money causing friction in the relationship, it's essential to go in with your eyes open.

If you are buying a property with a friend - or indeed investing in anything together - you need to work through all the possible scenarios, and agree up-front what you will do about it.

What if one of you cannot pay the mortgage? What if one of you wants to move on? What if you disagree over issues like decoration and repairs? Only when you have a watertight answer to all these questions should you consider it.

When it comes to lending money to friends, you need to decide up-front whether it's money you can afford to lose. If it's money you can bear to part with, it's best to consider it a gift, and if they return the cash eventually, then it's an unexpected bonus. That way you won't get upset if they never repay the cash, or if they take their time and you are unhappy with spending decisions they make in the interim.

If it's too much to part with for good, you need to ask yourself what you will do if they cannot afford to repay you. Would you take them to court? Would you call in debt collectors?

Whatever happens, money always affects friendships. The question is whether you can approach it in a way which avoids damaging your friendship and your finances.