Gambling addict’s pledge to family after debts led to jail

Adam Bradford with his parents, Denise and David
Adam Bradford with his parents, Denise and David
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A businessman jailed after leading a double life as a deceitful gambling addict today pledged to ‘repair what I have damaged’.

David Bradford was locked up for two years after swindling a company out of more than £50,000 to fund his habit.

The 58-year-old, a former primary school chair of governors, had only told his devastated family his secret the night before his Crown Court sentencing. He spent seven months in jail and was released in November last year to face the music with his family.

Now David has spoken exclusively to The Star ahead of his family’s appearance in a TV documentary tonight.

He said his main priority now is to take each day at a time as he rebuilds his life – and keep his family together.

“I got a better reception at home than I felt I deserved,” he said.

“My main focus is to hold the family together and repair what I have damaged. Outside of that, I would say I want to stop people being in the place I have ended up.

“My future is 24 hours long – I don’t try to go beyond that,” he added.

“I want my next 24 hours to be more positive than negative and the same for the next day and the next day.

“I have debts to get rid of and a family that wants to keep a home.

“There are a lot of challenges but I’m not going to try to solve them all tomorrow.”

David, of Waterthorpe, descended into a toxic cycle of gambling over a period of three decades.

He took out 21 credit cards and loans to gamble online – and secretly remortgaged his family’s home.

The father-of-three was taken on as a financial controller by a company in North Wales and was to be paid monthly – but he sometimes paid himself two or three times in a month.

Between January 2011 and October 2012, he stole £53,690.

David said: “I don’t know when I became a compulsive gambler. You lock yourself into your own world and become a different person.

“You are deceitful to all of those around you. You kid yourself that you want to win a lot of money to cure all your problems.

“But really if you win money you have more to bet with, and if you lose you have to bet more to win it back.”

David was sent to HM Prison Altcourse in Liverpool.

He said: “It wasn’t a great experience but it was an enormous relief to be away from all the aftershock that came.

“I wasn’t there to be embarrassed or ashamed about it in public. I was frozen in time, I was just numb.

“What was dismaying was my family were exposed to all the problems I created without their knowledge. They were dropped right in it.

“They were falling into a black hole with nothing to grab hold of.”

David suffered with heart problems in prison which are still ongoing.

Read more on this story HERE.

Star opinion: David’s story is not unique