Preston chef who won £1m on lottery still worked Christmas Day

A Preston chef turned in for work on Christmas Day even though he had just won £1m on a National Lottery Instant Win Game.

Friday, 27th December 2019, 11:55 am
Updated Friday, 27th December 2019, 4:05 pm

Father of one Didzis Pirags, 36, was on his lunch break when he felt lucky and logged on to his on-line National Lottery account, via The National Lottery App and discovered he had a balance of £6.50.

Didzis, who is chef and kitchen manager at The Phantom Winger in Garstang Road, Broughton, near Preston, discovered he was £1M richer last Saturday.

But despite his windfall he still turned in to do a lengthy shift on Christmas Day - and Boxing Day too!

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Didzis Pirags

Latvian-born Didzis, who has a five year old son, said, “I just felt the Instant Win Game Merry Millions was “my lucky thing”. It really catches my eye. I have played previously and won £5 and £10 and decided with the money I had in my account I would spend £5 on this game.

“I just could not believe it when it came up that I had won £1M! I was thinking this cannot be for real! I ran downstairs to my boss and just said oh my goodness I cannot believe what has just happened to me! Surely this cannot be for real? Is this really true what I am seeing infront of me?

“I immediately dialled the phone number which was showing on my mobile phone screen to confirm my win and my emotions were all over the place – I think they still are. This is totally unbelievable what has happened and the best dream come true ever at Christmas time.”

Didzis, who has already put a deposit down on the first home of his own, added that the news is totally life-changing: “I will be able to give my son the best ever life now which is all I have ever wished for.

Didzis Pirags celebrates his win

“I am currently living above my place of work and now I can look forward to owning a home of my own and a very special place to bring my son up.

“I have put a deposit down on a four bedroom house with a garden which I know my son will love!”

Didzis now plans to hand in his notice at work and look for another job in the Preston area.

But he is taking his time and letting his win sink in before making any rash decisions.

I just felt the Instant Win Game Merry Millions was my lucky thing.

Lisa Stambridge, general manager at the Phantom Winger said: “We’re all obviously delighted for Didzis and no one deserves this win more than him,

"It’ll absolutely change his and his family’s life for the better.

"The fact that Didzis still wanted to come to work on Christmas Day and Boxing Day is testament to the kind of person he is, and I’m personally really proud to have a team with that level of commitment to giving our customers a great service at this time of year.”

The Phantom Winger