ITV1 has commissioned Hewland International to make a one-off drama documentary about Howard Walmsley, the painter and decorator jailed in 2001 after posing as a£9m National Lottery winner to save his marriage.
ITV1 has commissioned Hewland International to make a one-off drama documentary about Howard Walmsley, the painter and decorator jailed in 2001 after posing as a £9m National Lottery winner to save his marriage.

Martin Kemp will play Walmsley, who was imprisoned for making fraudulent purchases to support his claims that he was a lottery jackpot winner. Michelle Collins will play his wife, Kathy, who is still married to Walmsley.

Can't Buy me Love , a 90-minute piece, will tell the sorry tale of how Walmsley, having fooled his wife into believing he had won the jackpot, bought luxury cars and holiday homes with cheques he knew would bounce, in an attempt to solve problems in his marriage.

In court, Walmsley confessed to 13 offences of dishonesty committed between March 1997 and April 1999.

Hewland paid Kathy Walmsley for the rights to the story, for an amount understood to be about £5,000, while Walmsley was serving his prison sentence. Walmsley came out of prison early in December 2002 after serving 15 months of a three-year sentence.

Hewland International's Kumari Salgado, who is producing the drama documentary, said the payment was made through an agent acting for Kathy Walmsley.

She said: "We did not pay Howard Walmsley as he was in prison at the time, and would not have been allowed to profit from his crimes."

Can't Buy me Love , which is scheduled to air in December in a primetime slot, was commissioned by ITV controller of drama Nick Elliott. The executive producer is Hewland founder Jane Hewland.