An independent retailer from Worcester is basking under the global spotlight after he helped a local customer piece together what could be the winning £33m Lotto ticket from the record £66m draw on 9 January.
Two tickets matched the winning numbers 26,27,46,47,52 and 58 to share the jackpot but one has yet to be officially claimed, although it is known to have been bought in the Worcester area.
Ambleside News owner Natu Patel told Convenience Store that a local lady claiming to have bought the winning ticket in his store came to him for help after she accidentally put it through the wash, leaving it in tatters.
While the winning numbers could still be seen, the barcode, date and serial number had been washed away.
“She was in quite a panic so we helped to calm her down. The ticket was very brittle so we placed it on some cardboard before wrapping it in polythene so that it didn’t break up. I then advised her to send it to Camelot by registered delivery.”
“I would be so happy for her if it turned out to be the winning one,” Natu added. The lady is a regular customer who visits the store around twice a week on average.
It’s not the first time that winning tickets have been sold from Natu’s shop. In the 27 years he’s owned it, a number of customers have won smaller sums, including one for £25,000.
“It would be great to have the reputation of a ‘lucky shop’ especially as we are hoping to retire soon and you never know this could help us find a buyer!” he joked.
The story has captured the attention of local, national and even global press.
“The whole thing has created such a buzz, I think it’s also really great for the community as a whole,” he added.
The lady may have to wait a number of months while Camelot investigates the validity of her claim.
A spokeswoman for Camelot said it had “received hundreds of claims of this nature.”
“All of these are currently being considered on a case-by-case basis, and we will follow up with all claimants directly to advise them whether their claim will be investigated further. Given the volume and the fact that some claims may require further information from the players involved, the process will take time,” she added.