Gary Eastwood and Mo!

Gary Eastwood and Mo!

I sat down last night to watch Channel 4’s “The Secret Millionaire” fully expecting a decent enough programme; millionaire complains at dirty digs, meets a few people, gives them cheques and then saunters back to his/her mansion and forgets about the people he has just spent the last week or so with. Series 1 DVD

Do not fear; we had all of that so at least we know the format will remain the same. What I didn’t expect was to go on an emotional rollercoaster to Blackpool and back with the millionaire. Most of the millionaires we have met in the series have been suit wearing, Ferrari driving financial types who show little or no emotion (maybe that’s why they have the money and I don’t!). There have been a couple who have been genuinely moved by the experience but they (to me at least) are few and far between.

Last night, Gary Eastwood (who set up his £20m business thanks to a £100 loan from his grandfather) visited Blackpool and we were treated to a town in despair, dilapidated buildings, the peer that has obviously seen better days and run down housing estates rife with drug and alcohol problems. It’s very sad to see how Blackpool, once the mecca of weekend holidays and stagdoos, has fallen into such a state. That said; I’m sure the film company didn’t show the best side of Blackpool to intensify the downbeat atmosphere.

He comes across as a down to earth guy, not one of these suits who couldn’t or wouldn’t give you the time of day. He is obviously affected by what he sees and who he meets and the emotions transfer from screen to living room effortlessly. He had a big impact on me last night and I for one thought it was the best show they had aired.

It didn’t quite move me to tears but I did get emotional! The lump in my throat manifested itself and tears were doing their best to leave the ocular region but I managed to hold it together even when he said goodbye to Jim, the World War 2 vet who was so proud to have served his country.

According to Jim, the UK has failed the war veterans and are the worst country to offer support for soldiers who have given everything to ensure our freedom. Even countries that lost against the Allies have better care in place for their vets – something has to be done to improve this.

I’m not going to go in too much detail in case some of the readers haven’t watched it yet. All I can say is please watch it; if you watch one episode from the series let it be this one.

The screen falls to black and the silence greets two “in memory” moments. Two of the characters we meet along the way lose their battle with life. Very very sad.


17 Responses to “The Secret Millionaire: Gary Eastwood, a diamond in the rough”

  1. my husband and i sat watching gary eastwood tonight on the secret millionair.
    What a fantastic man. I watch all the millionair programs but i have never seen one so touching as garys. Not only has he been through pain in his life he is now helping others. What a great man who is now in touch with his neice and nephew who he is supportin. I would really love to help people like gary has. What a special husband, father and uncle. Gary will be special in a lot of peoples live always. it doesnt hurt for a man to cry and show how he feels this is a man with true feelings. Well done gary you are truley wonderful for the things you do and have done

  2. The Teddy Bear Angel is an inspiration to us all.

    Loved it.

  3. Boo says:

    Genuinely moving and inspiring programme…Gary is an absolute diamond

  4. debbie says:

    I have just watched the secret millionaire with Gary Eastwood for the second time, because i was so deeply moved by his kindness i wanted my own teenagers to see it… when so much bad is going on in the world this is uplifting to watch…and Gary is a true and sincere man, who even through his own success has never forgot where his root started…down to earth and inspirational….i myself am not a millionaire but i have realised that i do have the time and dedication to support some needy causes. So through Garys story i realise that anything is possible and that even when i am feeling let down by life there is always someone more needy than myself… Thanks Gary from the bottom of my Heart

  5. julie morgan says:

    Hi,does anyone know the name of the poem,that the war vetran jim baker recited in the series with gary eastwood,one of the best secret milionaires,thanks.

  6. Sigal Kortran says:


    I’ve been watching “The Secret Millionaire”, in Tel-Aviv, Israel for some time & these people are extraordinary; I often cry.
    They inspire me : the volunteers & the milllionaire to be a better person. Today, i’ve watched Mr. Gary Eastwood; This gentelman has such a big heart & his show has touched me the most,so far.
    Thank you, people for showing me that the world is full with wonderfull people. & i promise to do my steps in becoming a better & a nicer person, daughter, friend, aunt , sister & a residence of this planet.

  7. Brent says:

    Just saw this episode here in Canada — goodness, quite heartbreaking. And yes, Gary Eastwood seems like a truly decent man.

  8. Colleen says:

    I just watched this show with Gary what a incrediable Man I cried, for sure this is the best one so far, I had to come on the internet to check him out. I have watched a few of these series but this one touched me the most.

  9. SAJ says:




  10. lee says:

    just like to say what you do gary is brilliant helping so many people should be more like you and the world would be a million times better

  11. alex radcliffe says:

    i have to say i was very pissed of by the gary eastwood episode as i live near/in blackpool and part are realy posh and now they are spending 250million to revamp a quarter of the town which is the run down bit and that is the only bit they showed.
    i mean all town have a bad side london has the most drug users and crimes in the uk also the most hate crimes.
    so blackpool is safer and in 4 years will be the best seaside resort and will not be run down at all.

  12. Mike B. says:

    It was this episode that inspired me to recently visit Blackpool (I live in Canada). While there I met Mr. Len Curtis and was able to tour Donna’s Dream House and see first hand the difference Gary’s gift has made. I agree with the other posters here – this was their best episode ever and Gary is a real gem of a man.

    To Alex – I stayed 3 nights in Blackpool and had a great time. Sadly, it makes for better television to show the worst side of where the millionaires are being filmed, but I came away with a very good impression of your city.

  13. kyri says:

    i watched gary eastwoods millionaire show today (21/11/11)and it reduced me to tears.this was by far the best of the secret millionaire programmes shown on tv.gary was probably the only secret millionaire to show his true emotions.if i had milliuons like gary i would go out and find good causes to help

  14. allan price says:

    hi,this man gary is a true human being,love the way is compassion spills out,keep on doing what your good at gary..solidarity to your family and yourself..allan

  15. Hi Gary, 21 November 2011
    Your last night C 4 progamme was a genuine tear-gerker. I admired your kindness and also your son`s.
    There are Millionaires, try and speak to them, they have not got time. Do what you are doing, you have got a heart of Gold so as your family.
    My business, `Harold Radford Coachbuilders Ltd` Classic Car Business was base at Brands Hatch untill 2005 and in the 70`s I use to Race Saloon Cars for Alfa Romeo and Classic Mini Cooper `S`s. I was manufacturing Mk 1 Mini Cooper `S` in 2004 and got hit with Bowel Cancer. I am hoping to restart Mk 1 Mini body -shells production March 2012.

    Hope we meet at Brands Hatch or some where some day. Keep on with the Good Work.
    `Radford` will be testing the New Mk 1 Mini Cooper `S` in Goodwood in few months time.

    Kind Regards,

    Mike Fernando.
    `Harold Radford Coachbuilders (London) Ltd.

  16. Hi Gary,

    Keep up the Good Work you are doing.


    Mike Fernando.

  17. Humberto says:

    Gary, I just finished watching your participation… and, man, it was so touching! You truly are giving back much of what you have been blessed with, and I’m not talking about money, but the way you got involved with the people. Thank you, big man, I hope we had some of that in my country (Mexico). Kind regards.

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