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Our lottery win is still working after 15 years
7:00pm Tuesday 10th September 2013 in Local News
WHEN dreaming of winning the lottery, everyone has a list of extravagant spends they would like to make.
For one chef, his dream came true.
Chris Topping, 61, is celebrating opening the Labworth Cafe along Canvey 15 years ago.
He managed to redevelop the run down 1930s building after he and his wife Doris, 62, won £900,000 on the lottery. They were two of 11 people in a syndicate at Amigos in Rayleigh, who shared a £5million jackpot in October 1997.
In 1997 it was a drab and crumbling building but with the help of family and friends Chris managed to redevelop the Grade II listed building into a modern design. It now includes a ground floor bistro and a first floor restaurant with panoramic views of the Thames Estuary.
Since then, the restaurant has welcomed thousands of customers.
Chris, who is also the head chef at the restaurant in Eastern Esplanade, said: “It’s certainly evolved over 15 years.
“We didn’t know how successful it would be at first. I don’t think anyone thought it would take off like it did.
“At the time it was brilliant to be able to get hold of it and see it grow. It was nice to be able to give something back to the community with my lottery win. Now we are there for our staff as well. We are one big family and have regular customers, who are also part of the family.”
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