A sudden spate of Lottery millionaires has left punters asking: Is Lancashire the luckiest place in England right now?
Red Rose numbers have come up six times in as many weeks with one mystery winner scooping £3.8m and five more picking up £1m each.
Camelot, who run the National Lottery, are trying to track down one millionaire ticket-holder who has failed to claim the life-changing prize more than three weeks after it was drawn.
And the company has revealed a bizarre double - two on-line winners called Mr W, both from Lancashire and both netting a million in the same draw on July 26.
“This amazing draw has clearly been amazing for one county in particular,” said a National Lottery spokesperson.
Lancashire’s lucky streak began with the Saturday June 22 Lotto draw. An on-line player, calling herself Mrs P, was the only one to pick all six numbers - 8-24-26-28-36-43 - and claimed a staggering £3,806,512. On the same night a ticket sold in the Blackpool and Fylde area was pulled out in the lucky millionaire draw, but as yet the prize has not been claimed. The winning code for that ticket is CZZ930051.
In July 53-year-old mother-of-two Gail Colledge from Carnforth won £1m - just five months after husband Trevor had tragically died from cancer. Steve and Melanie Hargreaves from Mill Hill, Blackburn also won a million in the Euro lucky millionaire draw.
And the two Mr W’s from Lancashire were pulled out in the special EuroMillions Raffle on July 26. The National Lottery spokesperson revealed: “I can’t recall that happening before. It was an uncanny twist. Both were playing online, both chose to release limited details of their win and both called themselves Mr W from Lancashire.
“While some winners choose a press event and some remain anonymous, interactive winners have the opportunity to release some details through partial publicity.
“When details of two Mr W’s winning in the same draw arrived at the National Lottery Office further enquiries revealed it was two separate players rather than one very, very lucky individual who had won twice. Huge congratulations to both Mr W’s, they have won with a simple click and without even touching a ticket. The special EuroMillions Millionaire Raffle draw on 26 July saw 100 £1million prizes won by players in the UK. It was millionaire making on an epic scale, especially, it seems, for Lancashire.”
The Lottery isn’t the only millionaire draw Lancashire currently excels at. The county is the third most successful for Premium Bond big prize winners.
According to National Savings and Investments, Surrey has the most £1m bond winners, closely followed by Kent and Lancashire.
The National Lottery has been running since 1994 and figures show around 70 per cent of the adult population play regularly. More than 40 per cent of all adults are in syndicates and, surprisingly, more than half of major prizewinners return to work rather than retire.