Thousands of £10 tickets sold before Gambling Commission tells pair it is not legal.
A retired couple who offered the chance to win their £500,000 four-bedroom home and swimming pool with a £10 raffle ticket have had to close the competition with “sincere regret and upset”.
Robert and Avril Smith announced last year that they were hoping to sell 60,000 of the £10 tickets, giving the public a chance to win their home in Grosmont, North Yorkshire.
The winner was originally to be drawn on Thursday, but the couple said they were “back to square one” after being told by the Gambling Commission that it was not a legal prize competition.
They said they had already extended the draw date to August after the charity Cancer Research UK had agreed to help promote it in 2019, but found out just before Christmas they could not continue.
In a post on the website set up by the couple to administer the competition, they said: “It is with sincere regret and upset that this competition has to close.
“The Gambling Commission has deemed the competition a potential lottery and not a legal prize competition.