2022 is year of lucky builders and biggest ever wins
Well, that was an astonishing year wasn’t it? The National Lottery made, on average, at least one millionaire a day during 2022 and re-wrote the history books with the 3 largest wins the UK has ever seen.
In total, we paid out more than £4.5Billion in prizes this year. 375‡ lucky players became National Lottery millionaires and no less than 782 players won a major prize of £50Thousand or more.
A trio of very lucky players won prizes so big they made headlines across the country. It started with Joe and Jess Thwaite from Gloucester, who became Britain’s biggest-ever National Lottery winners when they scooped an incredible £184Million jackpot.
Joe and Jess topped The National Lottery’s Rich List until 19th July, 2022 when an anonymous ticket-holder banked an eye-watering jackpot of £195,707,000. The extraordinary prize remains The National Lottery’s biggest-ever win.
The third of 2022’s trio of humongous wins came on 23rd September, when another anonymous winner banked an amazing £171Million prize.
All this action was great news for the Good Causes up and down the country which are supported by funding made possible by National Lottery players. An amazing £47Billion has been raised for Good Causes since the first draw was held in 1994 and £1.9Billion of that total was added in the most recent financial year (April 2021 - March 2022).
We currently raise the equivalent of £36Million every week for Good Causes projects big and small; from making a difference in communities across the country to supporting our athletes at this year’s Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.
Andy Carter, Senior Winners’ Advisor at The National Lottery, said, “It's been the busiest year of millionaire-making, including creating the biggest winners we have ever seen. And with every ticket raising money for Good Causes it is great for players to know that they continue to make a difference to people and projects across the UK.”
We analysed the 375‡ players who became National Lottery millionaires in 2022 to work out the year’s luckiest traits. It seems building was the luckiest profession and Cancer was the luckiest star sign.
Teachers, drivers and retail workers were the second, third and fourth luckiest professions and Leo and Aries came in joint second when it came to the luckiest star signs.
The National Lottery is all about numbers, of course, and the most drawn Lotto ball was… 39. It was followed by 21, 13, 50 and 58. The least drawn number was 8, which appeared just 5 times. And when it came to the Bonus Ball, number 20 ruled the roost.
2022 was a vintage year in terms of supporting Good Causes large and small. Earlier in the year we saw the difference funding makes to our athletes when Team GB and ParalympicsGB delivered 8 medals across the Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games.
There was plenty more action in the summer when the 4 home nation teams, each supported by National Lottery funding, won 273 medals at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.
And the nation’s excitement went through the roof in July when the Lionesses won the women’s Euro 2022. Thanks to National Lottery players, over the last 10 years over £50Million has been invested into football in ways which benefit the women and girl’s game.
We also spent the year bringing people together. The National Lottery’s Big Night of Musicals gave theatres a boost in January with a special free event for 10,000 people at Manchester’s AO Arena. The amazing show was broadcast to the nation on BBC1.
Thousands of people came together for the Big Jubilee Lunch in June, a project supported by more than £2Million of National Lottery funding. In addition, community, arts, sport and environmental projects across the UK were given a helping hand thanks to £22Million of National Lottery Platinum Jubilee funding.
The celebratory weekend culminated with millions of people watching The National Lottery’s Big Jubilee Street Party on ITV. It featured, among others, Kaiser Chiefs, Steps and Tom Grennan.
What better way to wrap up this review of the year than with some stories from our winners. There were plenty of heartwarming tales in 2022 and few as stirring as the one told by NHS worker Maxine Lloyd. She was having her first radiotherapy session after being diagnosed with breast cancer when her phone pinged to let her know the £1Million prize she won on a National Lottery Instant Win Game had been transferred to her account.
Maxine said the love and support she and her husband received throughout the year made them feel like they were already winners in life – the lottery win and its timing was “the cherry on the top of the cake”.
And who could forget the story of Jess and Joe Thwaite? As news of their £184Million win sunk in, Jess said, “The win gives us time to dream, which we haven’t had before. We’ve had one week to think about this and we now have time to share lots of experiences and go on adventures with our family and friends.”
What would be your tipple of choice if you won a big prize? For retired teacher Celeste Coles from Birmingham it was a simple glass of water.
Recounting the moment she won a staggering £3.6Million on EuroMillions, she said, “I’ve always been a pretty calm person, so there was no whooping from me. But I did decide a glass of water and a sit down was in order. Now I think about it, I was probably in shock, and I still am! You never think it will really happen to you.”
Meanwhile, Ian Black from Carlisle revealed he almost drove past the shop where he bought his winning National Lottery Scratchcard because there were roadworks outside.
Ian, who scratched off an incredible £2Million prize, said, “I went out of the shop and sat and scratched it; I just could not believe what I was seeing. I let out a scream and immediately drove home. As I went into the house I was shouting to my wife, Sandra, to come down the stairs. She immediately thought something had happened to the dog. I said ‘no, we have won £2Million!”
30th December 2022
‡National Lottery prize winners of over £1Million from 01/01/22 to 21/12/22.
Prize fund data taken from January – November with an estimate added for December
Amount given to Good Causes taken from April 2021 - March 2022
The National Lottery has been changing the lives of winners and supporting good causes across the UK since 1994. In that time, there have been more than 7,000 new millionaires created and by playing The National Lottery you raise over £30 million for good causes every week.Discover more