Ipswich: Richard and Cathy Brown push the boat out after £6.1million Lotto win
- Credit: Archant
A brand new 40ft yacht, a Porsche 911, a home in the country, a trip to Canada to see family, helping their nearest and dearest, and donating to a wildlife cause close to their hearts.
That’s how Richard and Cathy Brown, from Ipswich, plan to spend some of their £6,123,395 Lotto winnings.
The retired couple, both former journalists at Archant, were just a few days into a 10-week sailing trip around Britain on their yacht when they discovered their new multimillionaire status.
Mrs Brown, 64, said they had embarked on their trip from Levington Marina on May 25 - her husband’s 66th birthday.
The pair were aboard their yacht, Brave, in St Peter’s Marina, Newcastle, on a drizzly evening last Thursday when they discovered the win.
Mr Brown, who bought a months’ worth of Lottery tickets at Warren Heath Sainbury’s before they left, said: “Cathy had bought me a new phone and I’d downloaded The National Lottery app.
“As we were settling in for the evening, I decided to use the app as a bit of an experiment.
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“Cathy was looking over my shoulder, first of all to see the app in action and then we both realised that we had four, then five and then six of the numbers.
“I turned to my wife of 39 years and said, ‘you’re a multimillionaire’.”
To celebrate their cash windfall with the numbers - 3, 5, 25, 32, 33 and 34 which the pair have used since 1994 - the couple enjoyed a stiff gin and tonic.
Explaining their lottery numbers Mrs Brown said: “3, 5 and 25 are all connected with our birthdays and we’ve always picked 32, 33 and 34.
“On the winning ticket my numbers won £10 and Richard’s won £6.1million.”
Instead of continuing their British trip, Mr and Mrs Brown, who grew up in Suffolk, returned to Ipswich on their Grand Soleil 40ft yacht to collect their winnings.
Mrs Brown, who worked as a writer for the East Anglian Daily Times and editor at Let’s Talk, said: “We have been sailing together for more than 30 years but I can honestly say I’ve never felt anything on the water like it’s been for the last couple of days.
“It’s been magical to think about our hopes and dreams for the future, knowing that we can make a difference to our lives but also those nearest and dearest to us.”
While Mr and Mrs Brown, who have no children, have lots of plans on how to spend their money, it does not involve supersizing their yacht.
Mr Brown said: “We have had her since 2005 and we bought for our retirement.
“We downsized our house to pay for her. We had a big four-bedroom house in Henley with a very nice outlook for a much more modest four-bedroom house in town.
“While we could now truly upsize, we enjoy sailing together without crew and if we went any bigger that wouldn’t be the case so while Brave may be traded in for a newer model, for us, bigger is not going to be better.”
Mrs Brown added: “We are looking at an X or Dehler yacht which cost around £350,000, and would see Brave go to a new home.”
The couple, who had only previously won up to £80 on the Lottery, plan to sail to Brittany and to sunnier climes in the near future.
Mr Brown, a former reporter, sub editor and deputy editor at the East Anglian Daily Times, added: “If we go far it will be chartering boats rather than taking our own.
“I much prefer the idea of flying to the West Indies, chartering a boat and sailing there.”
Other trips in the pipeline include a visit to Canada to see Mrs Brown’s sister, a holiday in Rome and a trip see the Northern Lights.
They also plan to help out their five nieces and nephews, buy a home in the countryside and invest some of their money while Mr Brown wants to buy a Porsche 911.
But the first thing on the couple’s list is to buy Mrs Brown a new laptop.