Essex £1m lottery winner nearly given wrong tickets
- Credit: Simon Dack / Vervate
An Essex woman who has won £1million on the lottery nearly walked away with the wrong tickets.
Lynne Groves, 58, was mistakenly given a EuroMillion ticket by her local shopkeeper when she went in for her regular Lotto tickets.
Spotting the error, the shop keeper then ran off the Lotto Lucky Dip tickets – which included the £1m Lotto Millionaire Raffle number.
Ms Groves, a mother of three and grandmother of eight said she believes fate gave her a helping hand.
The Chelmsford carer said: “I know the family who run my local shop really well and there’s always a joke or kind word when I pop in.
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“The shopkeeper, realising the mistake, ran off my tickets a few seconds later from the machine. I’m sure it’s those precious moments that made me a millionaire.”
As well as treating her family, Ms Groves is keeping her side of a regular bargain by sending shop keeper Pierce, who runs the Nisa Stores in Sandford Road, Chelmsford, on a trip to Australia, as well as giving something to Jack who sold her the winning ticket.
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A carer for more than 30 years, Ms Groves is used to managing long night shifts and the Wednesday night on February 24 started the same as many others – however it ended very differently.
Ms Groves said: “I was looking after a gentleman who I have known for many years. About midnight I made myself a cup of tea and decided to check my lottery tickets.
“I saw the main numbers didn’t match but then I worked my way down to the Lotto Raffle, I couldn’t believe my eyes.”
Alone with a patient needing her help, Lynne couldn’t leave so tried ringing her partner of more than 20 years, Mick Martin, to share the news.
Getting no response, Lynne finally rang her youngest daughter who checked the numbers and confirmed her mum was a millionaire.
Reliving the moment Ms Groves said: “It was a surreal experience thinking all our worries were over.
“I thought I would be working until my late 60s, possibly beyond, and then thanks to one whopping dose of luck and a simple mistake, suddenly that’s all changed.
“I finally got through to Mick at 6.30am when I was able to say to him, ‘That’s it, we are retired and don’t have to work again.’
“My family mean the world to me. I’ve always done as much as I can to help them and now I can do even more.
“My children will have brand new cars, straight off the forecourt and so will Mick. The grandchildren will all have a little nest-egg set-up for when they leave school but I’m also sending them to Disneyland this year.”
She is also planning a family holiday to Italy, where it is thought her father – who died nine years’ ago – had family.
As for herself, Ms Groves said: “Winning means I can look after my nearest and dearest. This will give me more joy and happiness than any flash car or exotic holiday.
“I’m looking forward to doing some work on the house and then enjoying a retirement pottering in my garden, cooking and looking after my family. Bliss.”