A mum came home from holiday to an unimaginable surprise when she discovered she had won £1m on the EuroMillionslottery.
Donna Smith, 41, had just returned from Corfu when she found out the life-changing news after she checked her ticket at the Southern Co-Op in Selsey, where she also works.
She said: “I buy lottery tickets on birthdays and holidays and I was heading for Corfu on 29 June so I bought a ticket for the July 1 draw.
“When I returned from holiday I asked my work mates to check the ticket for me and it came up with a message saying I needed to call Camelot.”
Donna continued: “That was the longest walk home from work I have ever done. I kept running into friends and, of course, it’s the most natural thing in the world to stop and chat, especially when you are just back from holiday but I was desperate to get home and make the call.
“While I was phoning Camelot, my daughter Bryony checked online and immediately burst into tears but I kept saying ‘no, no, you must have got it wrong’.
“When Camelot told me I had won £1 million I still couldn’t believe it. I went out to a hen night that evening and found it very difficult to keep the news quiet and my daughter had to go off to work and it took a bit of time for her to calm down.”
Donna added: “It makes me shudder to think how easily I could have lost my £1m ticket.
“I took it on holiday with me in my purse and left it in all sorts of places including ten seats in front on me on the plane coming home.
“There was no room in the overhead lockers near me so my hand luggage was ten rows ahead. I would have kept it close by my side had I known it was worth £1 million.”
When asked if she would stop working at the Southern Co-Op in Selsey, Donna said: “I love my job so I’m definitely going to carry on. My boss now thinks I’m a lucky mascot!”
Donna lives with her daughter, Bryony, 18, and her parents live nearby – and the lucky winner has already decided she wants to help her family with her winnings
“I am buying three houses – one for me, one for my daughter and one for my parents,” she said.
“In fact, we have already had our offers accepted for my house and my daughter’s house, I just need to find one for my parents.
“I’m renting at the moment so this really is a life-changing win for me. We can’t wait to move in to our three houses!”
Every week EuroMillions UK Millionaire Maker guarantees to create two millionaires – one on a Tuesday and one on a Friday.
For every EuroMillions line played, UK players automatically receive a UK Millionaire Maker code printed on their ticket.