Lottery winners make planters to give to key workers

A carpenter who scooped a £1 million lottery win has been making wooden boxes filled with plants to bring some cheer to key workers.

Daniel Peart, 29, and his 30-year-old wife Charlotte won the money on a EuroMillions draw in 2018.

They have spent lockdown at home in Peterborough and came up with the idea for the planters while trying to keep their children occupied.

The Peart family hand over some of planters to Elaine Crane, deputy headteacher of Alderman Jacobs Primary School in Whittlesey (National Lottery/PA)

“When the country was first put into lockdown and the schools closed, I asked Dan to make something with our children to keep them busy. We joked it was their design and technology lesson,” said Mrs Peart.

“We hit on the idea to start making the boxes to be distributed as a ‘thank you’ to key workers.

“Our children, who have been really involved, painting and decorating them with lots of bright colours, thought the local school would be a worthy recipient.”

A selection of herbs, quick-growing salad leaves, flowers and shrubs have been planted in the boxes.

Planters have been given to the children of key workers at Alderman Jacobs Primary School in Whittlesey and to local police officers.

“My mum is in the police so I know through her the challenges they have faced but also how committed the whole force has been to keeping our community safe at this worrying time,” said Mrs Peart.

“We hope these little planters will serve as a little reminder that we are all incredibly grateful for everything they are doing for us.”

Brooklyn Peart, 12, and his seven-year-old sister Hollie have been painting planters as thank-you gifts for key workers (National Lottery/PA)

Elaine Crane, deputy headteacher of Alderman Jacobs Primary School, said: “It’s such a lovely project and we are absolutely delighted to have received these planters.

“Not only will it keep little minds and hands busy but the finished planters will bring some brightness and cheer for the children of our key workers.”

Detective Chief Inspector Neil Sloan, who received some planters on behalf of the team at Thorpe Wood police station in Peterborough, said: “We were very surprised to receive the gifts from Daniel and Charlotte.

“On behalf of all the officers and staff here at Thorpe Wood, we would like to thank them for their generosity and for thinking of us.”

Lottery winner Andrew Cunliffe, who scooped £1 million in 2016, heard what the Pearts were doing and has also started making planters.

The builder, from Blackpool, said: “Sometimes you can feel a bit helpless – wanting to do something but unsure what – so when we saw the Pearts were doing these planters we jumped on board.

Natalie Cunliffe and her daughter Myah give some hand-made salad boxes to headteacher Samantha Boden at Roseacre Academy in Blackpool (Gareth Jones/PA)

“It’s a grassroots solution and something that puts my skills to good use.

“I am obviously at home at the moment and unable to work and, like the Pearts, my wife Natalie and I are trying to keep the children occupied and educated and this seemed like the perfect solution.

“It is fantastic to see an end result from your efforts and also knowing that they are going to bring real cheer and smiles to the faces of the recipients.”

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