Legendary Pools winner Viv Nicholson is planning to ‘sell, sell, sell’ when she auctions off memorabilia of her colourful life.
Viv, 77 – who famously declared she would ‘spend, spend, spend’ when she and husband Keith won £152,00 in 1961 – and her brother Geoff Asprey, 71, plan to auction off Geoff’s collection of memorabilia in the new year.
They have set up the Asprey Nicholson Foundation and plan to use some of the money raised to buy tablet computers for old people, so they can communicate with each other in an ‘e-community’.
Geoff said: “The object of the foundation is to buy iPads they can use in a sort of e-village and talk to each other over the internet. We’re hoping to raise as much as we can,
“Viv’s a figure who stands there to show you what can happen when you have got nobody when you are old.”
Viv, who now lives in a care home in Castleford following a stroke three years ago, shot to fame with the Pools win, lavishing money on fancy clothes, houses, cars, drink and parties.
But when Keith was killed at the wheel of his Jaguar just four years later, Viv was declared bankrupt as the taxman took everything.
After losing the cash, Viv battled alcohol and depression, married three more times and performed on the club scene in bands with Geoff, also opening a short-lived boutique, and moving to Malta in a brief bid for a new start.
Interest in her story has never diminished over the years, with an award-winning 1999 West End musical – Spend Spend Spend – staged about her life and an invite from the Smiths to pose for the cover of their 1984 single Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now.
Viv and Geoff are exhibiting the memorabilia at an empty unit in Carlton Lanes Shopping Centre, and plan to hold the auction in the new year.
Items up for grabs include photos of Viv and Geoff in their various club bands, along with microphone stands and other stage equipment, items from Viv’s home before she and Keith won the Pools, and even a drawing by Viv.
Geoff said: “I wanted Castleford people to see what she’s been left with. Viv doesn’t have anything herself, all these items are ones I’ve saved or collected over the years.”