Life changing

Christmas with added spark for Essex electrician

Christmas for an electrician from Upminster had plenty of sparkle this year after he won £1M and a luxury winter getaway on the EuroMillions Mega Week just before the festive season.

Jason Douglas–Smith, 44, is drawing up the guest list for the once in a lifetime holiday to Zermatt in Switzerland where their every winter whim will be catered for. He said, “I must have been a very good boy this year for Santa and his elves to choose this Christmas present for me, it’s just magic and I’m going to enjoy every second of it. I’ve been working on a freezing cold site in Stratford so at least I’ll be acclimatised for Switzerland!”

The lucky father of two bought the winning ticket at his local shop when he was on the way home from work. The electrician thought no more of it until the following morning when he discovered he had won one of the five UK EuroMillions Mega Week prizes up for grabs in the Mega Week draw.

“I was getting ready for work, making my packed lunch, when I decided to check my ticket. It was just after 5am so I wasn’t at my sharpest but once I had logged onto the website and could see that my Millionaire Maker code matched one of the five showing up I very quickly started to sharpen up!”

Check and double check

Unsure of his good fortune, and starting to think it was a complicated wind–up, Jason decided to go back to his local shop so they could check it on the machine properly.

“I abandoned my cheese sandwiches and ran out of the house to the station to meet my workmate, making up an excuse why I couldn’t go in that day but handing over the site keys, then I went to the shop which was shut so instead I had to go to a coffee shop. Once there I downloaded The National Lottery app and again checked my ticket, which again confirmed I was a winner. By this time the shop was open and I went in to triple–check it was a winner. Even when the shopkeeper handed me a slip of paper and said I better call Camelot I still couldn’t believe it was me, in fact I still can’t.”

Dream holiday

Despite it being the season of goodwill Jason couldn’t believe the dream prize which is now his. “If you’d told me at the start of the week that I would be a millionaire taking seven guests business class to Geneva, staying in a ski chalet where we would be fed and watered everyday before heading off to ski, or ice–skate or even take a helicopter trip I’d have thought you were on the Christmas sherry. But this gift has appeared and I’d be mad not to take it. It’s a once in a lifetime experience, not something I could dream of doing on a regular basis, but believe you me, my family and I will savour every second of those seven days!”

While his holiday plans may be on track, Jason has given little thought to the next steps although he thinks a new home may be on the cards and a bit of time off work while he plans the next steps. One thing is for sure, Jason who started the year in hospital for a knee operation and then was off work and unpaid for nine weeks with a lung infection, is going to have fun.

“You hear people say they will carry on as usual once they’ve won, not for me. In my mind the lottery is all about fun, the whole point if you win is to have fun and I fully intend to do that! It’s occurred to me that all those places you see on the telly or hear about, like the Grand Canyon or Australia, are now within reach. If I wake up tomorrow and fancy a trip to New York, I can just go without having to think about the money. And if my lad needs a car, it’s a no–brainer. This year started pretty poorly but has rounded off rather nicely; 2017 is going to be a whopper for me and my family!”

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