Painter’s Keep was originally a water tower built in 1925 in the Kingston Gorse Estate, known as ‘millionaire’s row’ in East Preston, near Angmering, West Sussex. Currently the property is valued at £1.25 million. It has been fully refurbished and has stunning, panoramic views from the tower. Due to Brexit, stamp duty changes and the pandemic, Mr Pearce decided to run a prize draw to sell his house.
Mr Pearce, a management consultant, said: “The prize draw was a chance to try something different, I genuinely believed in my triple objectives: to move house, change someone’s life, and raise money for charity. It seemed like a perfect solution. £2 tickets makes it accessible.”
He was determined to keep tickets affordable: “I wanted everybody to have the opportunity to win this house and I believe, that at £2, just about everyone can afford to win this house.”
Mr Pearce needed to sell 750,000 tickets and raise £1.5 million to guarantee the reserve price of the house sale, cover stamp duty, fees and donations to his two chosen charities. He sold 433,943 tickets including free tickets for referrals and postal entries.
Unfortunately these ticket sales were not enough to sell the house. Instead, a very sizeable cash prize of £365, 305 was awarded on Wednesday 09 December at a live award ceremony.
Simon Bubloz from Windward Grove was the master of ceremony during the prize draw. Mr Bubloz said: “It’s all possible because of Peter. Congratulations to the winners.”
The cash prize instead of the house was £365,305 raised from the ticket sales. The draw included purchased tickets, free tickets and postal entries. The winning number was: 2009B6. James won it, he bought 22 tickets and currently lives abroad. He has links to Sussex and Hampshire.
Gary won £10,000. This prize was awarded to the person who got the most other people involved in the prize draw. Gary made over 500 referrals to friends and family.
Katrina won a £3000 referral prize which was open to everyone who referred two other people to the prize draw. She spoke to Mr Pearce during a live telephone call. She said she was at the Duke of Wellington in Shoreham when she bought tickets. Her father worked on the roof of Painter’s Keep. She said: “I’ll save the money for a nice holiday. I helped the hospice, I’m so pleased to help.”
Eighty percent of the proceeds are awarded in prize money to the winners less the costs of running the prize draw and 10% of the gross ticket sales which amount to £78,051 will go to St Barnabas House and their sister hospice, Chestnut Tree House for children.
St Barnabas House charity
In this interview with Mr Bubloz, Mr Pearce explained the importance of the charities: “My father died at St Barnabas and we wanted the hospice to benefit. The care that they provide, the work they do, is one of those things that we keep out of our consciousness until we need it and if ever you’ve experienced it, you’ll know it’s incredible.
“They’re going through an incredibly tough time. Their income has been devastated because a vast amount of fundraising involves people getting together and they’ve not been able to do that (because of the pandemic.)
“So Dad passing there was a tough experience but it was made a lot less tough by the care that they provided.”
Becki Jupp, Fundraising and Communications director at St Barnabas House said thank you to Peter and everybody who has bought tickets, almost £80,000 will make such a difference to both hospices. “It has been a really tricky year for fundraising… It costs around £13.5m to run both hospices every year.”
Asked about the future, Mr Pearce said: “I’m looking forward to the next chapter. I get quite upset about social distancing, when a toddler smiles at me, I can’t smile back because I have a mask on. Since the pandemic started, I want to be travelling, wake me up when it’s all over. I’d like to go to South America.”
“We’ve looked at potential opportunities, I want to live a life that’s a lot more eclectic. Travelling, back for three months then off again. The house is not a negative tie. It’s near the beach. But seventeen years is a long time, I’m ready to do new things.”
Harry Tuke, from Elite Law Solicitors, Hove, witnessed the draw. He said: “This is an eye opener, I’ve never been involved in a competition before but they’re becoming increasingly popular. I’m a big supporter of it. People have been forced to think outside the box, spend a small amount of money for a potentially very large reward.”
This article was published in the Worthing Herald.