UK’s most generous lotto winners – like man who rewarded pals from beyond grave

Have you ever asked yourself what you would do if you won the lottery? Stupid question, of course you have…

For some lucky sods, this question has become a reality.

And while some Brits have blown their fortunes on booze, drugs and sex, others have been much more considerate.

From a couple who gave £60million to those more in need to a woman who funded army veterans’ reunion trips, here we take a look at some of Britain’s most generous lotto winners.

Baby joy

Earlier this week a doting couple revealed how they used their £1million scoop on the EuroMillions to pay for their daughters to have children via IVF.

The daughters of Ruth and Mark Chalmers suffered from polycystic ovary syndrome.

But after winning the prize money in February 2018, the Halifax couple put their girls on the property ladder before paying for IVF treatment.

Natalie and Leanne have since given birth to little boys – three-year-old Koby and 19-month-old Brogen.

And Grandad Mark, 60, said: “Natalie had gone through it for quite a number of years of trying to get pregnant and different things going on with her medical conditions.

“At one stage, she rang me in floods of tears saying ‘they want to take my womb out’ and she thought that was the absolute end.

“But luckily, she persevered, she saw some other doctors, and we didn’t need to go down that route. And then we looked at going down the IVF route.”

He added: “The lottery is a fantasy that became reality for us.

“It’s given us a lot of security and a lot of pleasure – most over those two (boys).”

Party beyond the grave

Before his death, lottery jackpot winner Colin Weir made sure his pals had a no-expense-spared farewell party to remember.

Colin and his ex wife Christine, from Ayrshire, won a whopping £161million in the EuroMillions ten years ago.

The 72-year-old died in 2019 but he gave his friends and family one last gift with a luxury £1million bash at the Trump Turnberry.

His friends remembered him by dining on lobster, drinking a £340 bottle of champagne and gorging on truffle soup.

One of his pals told the Daily Record : “Colin was certain before he died that he wanted to give his pals a great party to remember him by.

““So he booked out one of the biggest rooms at Trump Turnberry Hotel and treated all of his friends to the biggest and grandest party any of us had ever seen.

“It was amazing.”

Changing lives

“I’ve had more joy from changing lives than buying jewellery.”

This is a quote from Frances Connolly, who along with husband Patrick, won a £114.9million Euromillions jackpot in 2019.

After striking gold, she made a list of 50 friends and family who she wanted to support with her fortune.

The Armagh couple even donated £60million to charity and families in need.

And their biggest purchase for themselves was a £60,000 Jaguar.

Retired teacher Frances told the Times: "When we won the lottery I said I wanted a second-hand car, and I really did. This year I changed that and I got an electric Jag for £60,000.

"It had to be new because there really aren’t any that are second-hand, but I’ll keep this and hope to God there will be a second-hand Jag by the time I’m finished with this one.”

Charity donation

Great-grandad Peter Congdon won £13.5million in 2015.

The councillor, from Truro, Cornwall, quickly made sure to give back to the community.

His wife, Rosemary, had died of Multiple Sclerosis before he won the money, and in her honour he pledged £1million to the Merlin MS Centre in Cornwall.

Afterwards he said: “To watch your loved one struggle with a condition like MS is incredibly difficult and it is great that there are places like the Merlin Centre which offer treatment and support to those who need it.

“As soon as I won I knew straight away that I wanted to do something to help this important charity improve the lives of other people in Cornwall with MS and I'm thrilled that they will be able to use the money to build a much-needed hydrotherapy pool."

Veteran surprise

A EuroMillions winning couple shocked an army veteran last Christmas by giving him a day to remember.

Tom Beevers, 104-years-old, who served in Second World War, was greeted at his home in Maghull, Merseyside, by Sharon and Nigel Mather.

The couple won £12.4 million in the Euromillions in 2010.

And the generous pair gave Everton supporting Tom a hamper full of Christmas treats and entertained him with a local choir.

Afterwards the great-great-grandad said: “It’s a good feeling to have, to think that people think so much of you to come – I can’t put words to it.”

UK's most charitable winner

Four years ago a lady dubbed the UK’s most charitable Lotto winner died aged 77 after complications from gallstones.

Barbara Wragg had won an enviable £7.6million with hubby Ray in 2000 but just hours after the scoop she said: “It is too much for one couple to spend.”

The kind-hearted Brit gave £5.5million away to help friends, strangers and 17 separate charities, including hospitals and schools.

After winning the jackpot in 2000, the Sheffield United fan said: “As soon as we knew we’d won we made our decision to give much of it away.”

Her first generous act was selling her home at a cut-price to a first-time buyer couple.

The pair also gave the £20,000 surplus to local hospitals in Sheffield and they also funded army veterans’ reunion trips.

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