Retired Bideford bus driver wins £95k on Lotto

11:31 23 May 2014

National Lottery Winner Eric Wilson in Bideford. 
Pic by Martin Bennett

National Lottery Winner Eric Wilson in Bideford. Pic by Martin Bennett

©Martin Bennett 2014

Lottery win is ‘icing on the cake’ for 70-year-old to ‘enjoy retirement’ in Bideford.

National Lottery Winner Eric Wilson in Bideford. 
Pic by Martin BennettNational Lottery Winner Eric Wilson in Bideford. Pic by Martin Bennett

A RETIRED bus driver from Bideford who stashed his winning Lotto ticket in a biscuit tin for four days after discovering he’d won nearly £95,000.

Eric Wilson, 70, matched five numbers in the Lotto draw and hid his ticket in the safest place he could think of as he was due to go on holiday.

Eric said: “When I told a friend that even though I’d won the Lottery, I was still planning to go away and leave the ticket in a safe place, he said, ‘But what if the flat burns down?’, that’s why I put it in the tin.

“When I realised I had won, I panicked.

“The first thing I did was call my lady friend, Pat, and told her to come over straight away – she thought I was having a heart attack and couldn’t believe it when I told her what had happened.”

Father-of-two and grandfather-of-four Eric actually won three times on one ticket, scooping £94,340 on one line and matching three numbers on two other lines to claim £25 each time.

Eric is originally from South London but moved to Bideford in 1974 where he worked for First Great Western and then National Express.

He said: “I actually picked up the Lotto play slip a few weeks ago and filled it in with different combinations of the same spread of numbers.

“I don’t know what prompted me to take it to the newsagent that particular day but thank goodness I did.

“I’ve told my children but we haven’t celebrated yet, I think I’m still waiting for it to sink in.

“I have bought myself a new car though, a second-hand Peugeot 508, and am hoping to go away for a special trip at the end of the summer.

“This win really is just the icing on the cake for me, it means that I can enjoy my retirement without worrying about money.”

Eric’s winning numbers were 16, 17, 38, 44 and 49 with the bonus ball of 14. The winning ticket was bought from McColl’s newsagent in Bideford.

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 21:03
Hundreds of people met in Barnstaple on Thursday evening to release purple balloons in memory of Katie Gammon, who died on Sunday. Picture: Andy Keeble

Family and friends line banks of the river to remember inspirational teen.

Read more
Yesterday, 20:06
Ilfracombe Carnival 2015

It’s carnival time as the town celebrates

Read more
Yesterday, 15:18
Visitors packed onto Woolacombe Beach yesterday afternoon (Tues).

Attraction owner says better weather next week comes at ‘critical time’ as school holidays draw to a close.

Read more
Yesterday, 13:52
Richard Davey and Paul Dyer completed the 914-mile journey for Children's hospice South West

A pair of cyclists from Ilfracombe have raised nearly £1,500 by completing the fabled journey from John O’Groats to Land’s End.

Read more
Yesterday, 13:51
Beats Workin's Tom Hewlett, Glenn Field and Matthew Price at the new coffee shop

A popular Barnstaple business has expanded with a new coffee and skateboard shop.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:57
Expect a rollercoaster of fun and colourful costumes at Ilfracombe Carnival tonight

Don’t miss Ilfracombe Carnival on Thursday, August 27

Read more
Yesterday, 09:54
Ted and Peggy Ingram

A heartbroken Normandy veteran who could not bear to be parted from his love of 74 years has died just weeks after his wife.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:02
Rahim Jan has found a new home at BJ's Value House in Bideford.

Despite facing unemployment after being turfed from his roadside spot off the A39, Jans Diner has found a new home in Bideford.

Read more
Yesterday, 08:30
Devon County Council says it hopes to prevent future flooding on the Taw Bridge in Barnstaple. Picture: Submitted

Blocked drain blamed for regular flooding at Braunton Road side of Taw Bridge

Read more
Yesterday, 08:00
Barnstaple Inner Wheel members welcomed Revati Jathar, from the Inner Wheel Club of Ambarnath of Mumbai. Picture: Submitted

Members welcome special visitor from sister club in Mumbai

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 11°C

Most Read News

Great British Life


Great British Life

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Digital Edition

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition today E-edition


North Devon's trusted business finder