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Last Updated: Tuesday, 6 May, 2003, 09:44 GMT 10:44 UK
Will leaves cat in clover
Tinker the cat
Mrs Layne's former neighbours are looking after Tinker

A stray cat has been left a large house in north London and a 100,000 trust fund by an elderly woman he befriended.

Tinker, who is thought to be about eight years old, made friends with Margaret Layne, 89, before she died last year.

Mrs Layne's will, which has just been published, stated that Tinker should be able to stay in the 350,000 house in Harrow until he dies.

Mrs Layne had no children and her estate is worth 585,912.

There's a limit to what you can spend it on. I've done a bit of work on the house and Tinker is fond of coley, so we bought him some
Eugene Wheatley, trustee

The sum of 100,000 was left in a trust fund to Mrs Layne's former neighbours, Ann and Eugene Wheatley, so they could maintain the house and look after Tinker.

Mr Wheatley, 75, said the couple's own two cats had chosen to move in with their wealthy friend.

"He has the run of the house, which he now shares with Lucy, who was our pussy but decided to move there after she had a litter.

"And there's Stardust, a white cat who came to us from a friend who couldn't look after him any more but chose to go and live there."

Mr Wheatley said the fall in the stock market had halved the value of the trust fund.

"There's a limit to what you can spend it on. I've done a bit of work on the house and Tinker is fond of coley, so we bought him some."

There is one catch for Tinker, though.

If he decides to leave home the trust fund will be ended and the estate will pass to the Wheatleys.




WATCH AND LISTEN
The BBC's John Moylan
"Tinker's newfound fortune could be short-lived"




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