Everyone dreams of telling their boss: “I’m not coming into work today, I’ve won the lottery.”This dream became a reality for these winners when they each scooped more than a million pounds on the National Lottery.The cash draw has just created its 4,000th millionaire.According to Camelot, the average winner buys FIVE cars and goes for THREE holidays every year.
Wales Online caught up with three winners to find out how winning the jackpot has changed their lives.
Denise and Paul Hardware
Paul Hardware had just found out he was going to be made redundant from his job as a chef when he discovered he had won nearly £5m.
The 51-year-old from Cardiff had been working opposite shifts to his wife Denise, a bakery supervisor, and the couple hardly saw each other.
“We’d been buying lottery tickets for 14 years and we’d won a couple of tenners, but that was it,” said Denise.
After discovering Paul was going to lose his job, the pair decided to add an extra line of lucky dip numbers to their ticket.
Kept checking the numbers
“I looked the numbers up on Teletext,” recalled Paul. “I checked them and checked them again. I refused to turn Teletext off in case the numbers changed!”
The pair had to wait for two hours before the Camelot office opened at 9am and in the meantime, Denise had to go into work.
When Paul made the phone call, he was told they had all six numbers and had won a total of £4,986,272.
Quit jobs immediately
The couple, who are dedicated rugby fans, chose to have their cheque presentation at the Millennium Stadium, where they were met by scrum-half legend Gareth Edwards.
Paul and Denise both left their jobs straight away and decided to go on a cruise to the Mediterranean to let the news sink in.
When they returned home, they paid off their mortgage and bought their dream home in Somerset.
They also bought a second-hand Vauxhall Astra for their son Matthew, who was 20 at the time and had just written off his old car.
Since then, they have bought three more properties for Matthew and other family members, as well as a caravan for themselves in Trecco Bay, Porthcawl.
“We’d both been staying there since we were children and it’s a great base for visiting the family,” said Denise.
Helped fund son’s degree
The couple have also been able to help Matthew, 28, to fund his degree in animal biology and conservation from Oxford Brookes University.
“I trained him up as a chef, but it’s great that we’ve been able to help him fulfil what he always wanted to do,” said Paul.
The couple have set up savings accounts for their three grandchildren – seven-year-old Francesca, four-year-old Logan and two-year-old James.
“Life has changed so much since we won,” said Denise. “It’s lovely to be able to spoil the grandchildren.”