A group of lottery winners volunteered at a branch of the charity Baby Basics for a day to help spruce up donated buggies and cots, and prepare kits to give to newborn babies and their mothers.

They packed “welcome to the world” kits for infants – including items such as nappies, bedding, clothing and a first toy – during their day with the charity in Lowestoft, Suffolk.

The team also packed handmade washbags with essential toiletries for new mothers heading to hospital, and helped clean and service donated pushchairs and cots.

Baby Basics Lowestoft is part of the national organisation, Baby Basics UK, which has received more than £190,000 in funding from The National Lottery Community Fund.

The charity, founded in Sheffield in 2009, provides practical help to those unable to afford the basic essentials and equipment to look after their newborns.

It provides tailored referral bags of cleaned and ironed baby clothes, and other essentials, free to families in need.

Lottery winners (L-R) Katy Canty, Christine Howlett and Tracy Field help pack washbags at Baby Basics Lowestoft. (National Lottery/ PA)
Lottery winners Katy Canty, Christine Howlett and Tracy Field help pack washbags at Baby Basics Lowestoft (National Lottery/PA)

The charity now has more than 50 branches across the UK.

Christine Howlett, of Beccles, Suffolk – whose husband Graham won £2.2 million on the National Lottery in 2004, made the washbags for new mothers – sewing them by hand.

She said: “It was so enjoyable sewing the little washbags knowing each one would be used by a new mum as she welcomes her baby to the world.

“I can remember when I was raising my daughters, money was very tight; maybe that’s where my love of sewing started as I used to sew clothes for them to save a few pennies.

“We have all been amazed at the work of Baby Basics Lowestoft and the small team’s ability to create real and immediate solutions to help families who might be struggling.

“Knowing that each ‘welcome to the world pack’ we put together will give a baby a slightly better start in life, and help the mum to do the best for their baby, is very moving.

Kerry Swatman with a 'welcome to the world' kit that the lottery winners have been helping to pack. (National Lottery/ PA)
Kerry Swatman with a ‘welcome to the world’ kit that the lottery winners have been helping to pack (National Lottery/ PA)

“It’s also great that we’ve been able to upcycle so many of the larger items and give them a new lease of life.

“I’ll be keeping a keen eye out in the town to see if I spot any of the pushchairs that I worked on now ferrying a little one about, that would really make my day.”

Also helping was Craig Harrison of Lowestoft, who won £100,000 every month for a year on a National Lottery scratchcard he bought in 2022 when he popped out for some cooking oil for his family’s Sunday roast.

Kerry Swatman, whose mother Jean won £2 million on Lotto in 2013, also lent a hand, as did Charlotte and Daniel Peart, of Peterborough, who won £1 million in 2018, Tracy Field, of Benfleet, Essex, who scooped £2.5 million in 2008, and Katie and Antony Canty, of Maldon in Essex, who won £1 million in 2020.

Judith Goddard, who helped set up Baby Basics Lowestoft at Gunton Baptist Church in 2016, said, “We’ve enjoyed working with the local National Lottery winners and are touched that they have given up their time in this way.

“Things are incredibly tough for many people, so we are always grateful for the donations we also receive from our local community.

“In fact, our community is so supportive that we are now desperately in need of new larger premises so we can safely store everything and continue to help the growing number of Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft families in need.

“Hopefully today’s activity will create a little more awareness of our work and maybe someone with spare office space will get in touch.”