Newspaper for Crossmaglen, South Armagh, Newry and Down.

A prosperous New Year for Newry winner of £1.8m Lotto jackpot

One lucky Newry man rang in a particularly prosperous New Year after learning he had scooped a £1.8m lotto jackpot.

The prize had gone unclaimed since the draw on the 29th November, prompting the National Lottery to launch a public appeal in the run up to Christmas urging people in the Newry and Mourne area to check their tickets in a bid to unite the winning ticket holder with their prize before Christmas.

Having read that the National Lottery were trying to locate the winner, farm shop owner, Simon Savage from Lurganare remembered he had played the Lotto at the end of November and began to search through tickets he had at home.

“I had tickets in a couple of different places and the first batch I looked at had no winners, but when I looked under a cheque I planned to lodge in the bank later that day, I found two more tickets,” he said.

“When I checked those, to my utter amazement one of them had the winning numbers but I still couldn’t quite believe what I was seeing so I got my brother to check it again.

“I just pushed the ticket towards him and asked him to check the numbers.

“I was shaking so he asked me to sit down and after checking the numbers and dates all corresponded he told me the amazing news.

“I think we were both in shock and didn’t know what to do. In the end, he just shook my hand and congratulated me.”

Simon came forward to claim the jackpot with the winning numbers 6, 11, 18, 19, 38 and 42 on Thursday 18th December and, despite becoming a millionaire, the loyal shopkeeper kept his shop open on Christmas Eve so customers could collect their turkeys.

Mr Savage, who has had impaired hearing since his 20s, says he intends to spending some of his new-found fortune on finding a way to improve his hearing.

He also plans to go on holiday now his busy Christmas period is over.