CASH CASINO -
Since this Special Exhibition was launched in October 2016 Terry Bate -
We’ll let Terry tell the story in his own words -
Radio Luxembourg, Cash Casino and the Agoraphobic
After the Marine and Broadcasting Offences Act came into force in August, 1967 and the UK activities of Radio Caroline ceased, I was approached by Radio Luxembourg to sell and produce my copyrighted promotion “Cash Casino” for them on a freelance basis.
We produced exactly the same show, voiced by Bill Hearne and it started running in October, 1967. Cash Casino on Radio Luxembourg became highly successful, with advertisers lining up to buy a segment.
We brought all the winners up to London and interviewed them as promotion for the programme. In June, 1968 a listener in Kent won a big jackpot of £2200 on Cash Casino. Two thousand two hundred pounds was big money in those days.
We usually invited the winner to come to the Radio Luxembourg studios at 38 Hertford Street in London for an interview and to present the winner’s cheque. We called the house in Kent several times before someone finally answered. The winner was a young lady who told us that under no circumstances would she accept an all expenses paid trip to London.
After several calls, I spoke with the mother who told me that her daughter, the winner, did not leave the house and hadn’t in years. She suffered from agoraphobia, defined as fear of open spaces, or as a severe anxiety condition and a pattern of avoidance behaviour of which I had never heard.
I finally persuaded the girl to allow Bill Hearne, the Cash Casino announcer, to drive down to Kent, present the cheque and do a taped interview. When he got there, plus cheque, mother told him that despite her promise the daughter would not see him. So Bill left the cheque and came back to London with no winners interview. End of story, I thought.
In September, 1968, I got a phone call from the Vicar of St. Martins in the Fields, a well-
A few months later in January, 1969, I received a telephone call from a lawyer, who told me that he had been retained by the winner’s mother to investigate this impostor – me! Again I told him the whole story. That I thought was that – again. In April I was called by a private detective who had been retained by the mother to find me, again with the same story that the real me was missing and that I was an impostor. Told him the story and that was that I thought, yet again!
In the summer of 1969, I was in Noordwijk, Holland where I had rented a beach front house for two months and moved the family over from the UK for a summer holiday. As an aside, Ronan had opened yet another Caroline office in Holland and I was also giving him a hand. In August, I received a call from Sergeant Bains of the Golders Green CID. I had met him eighteen months previously when our house in Hampstead had been burgled and he was one of the investigating officers.
He had overheard a conversation at CID headquarters in London, where my name was mentioned. He told the officers that he knew me and asked what was going on. Evidently, the Kent winner’s mother had been to Scotland Yard and reported me as a missing person! Yet again I repeated the story to Sergeant Bains and met with him and his boss on my return to the UK in September. The CID put a watch on the house in Kent. The mother came and went, but there was no sign of the daughter outside. However, there was evidence that someone was still inside the house after mother went out.
In February, 1970, the phone calls started, four on one Saturday morning, from the girl and her mother. Bill Hearne, my announcer, received vaguely threatening calls and mother visited Scotland Yard yet again. That was the last straw. The telephone company cut off their telephone and the CID threatened the mother with prosecution from me (which I had been reluctant to do, because this was one very sick young lady) Finally, finally it all stopped.
It was lucrative activity for me, but Cash Casino was to blame for the whole mess!
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