Winners

Mum and dad to support children’s charity after EuroMillions win

A builder’s merchant worker from Devon who cemented a huge £1,000,000 EuroMillions National Lottery prize plans to ‘give something back’ to a children’s charity after originally thinking the win was a joke.

Neil Smart and his wife Sue will use some of the winnings to buy a bigger family car, making their long journeys to a hospital in Birmingham more comfortable. Their son, aged 9, was born with scoliosis, a condition affecting the spine, and needs ongoing care and support.

The 50-year-old father of 3 said, “People have said, ‘well done, it couldn't happen to a nicer family’, that it is nice to see ordinary people win, which is all lovely to hear. But the win will make a difference to our whole family for years to come, and that is so important.”

The couple have pledged to make a donation to the Ronald McDonald House charity, a cause close to their heart. The charity houses families nearby when their child is in hospital, potentially far from home. Neil said, “They have given me somewhere to stay a couple of times when I have really needed help. I want to help them out and give something back. I can’t change the world with what I have but every little helps.”

Neil and Sue, 51, didn’t realise they had won the EuroMillions UK Millionaire Maker prize until 2 days later. Neil said, “I don’t check religiously and only got around to it on Sunday night. When I logged in I immediately saw a message which said, ‘Congratulations you’ve won £1,000,000’. I called my daughter to read it. We both thought it couldn’t be real, even though it was clearly on The National Lottery app and wasn’t just some random email. She posted on our family group chat that Dad had won The National Lottery and Sue came back saying it was probably just a fiver.”

Neither Sue nor Neil dared to believe they could be winners and had a sleepless night wondering if they had really won. Neil was up early to open up the local builder’s merchant where he works before finally calling Camelot at 9am to receive confirmation.

Alongside the donation to Ronald McDonald, the couple plan take their loved-ones away on to a cruise, when it is safe to do so, treating the whole family to a suite with a balcony so they can all have a taste of first class cruising.

1st April 2021

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