A divorcee who lost her job during the Covid-19 pandemic plans to buy a new house with her boyfriend after winning almost £250,000 on the lottery.
Samantha Morton, 36, was furloughed in March from her job as a warehouse and logistics manager in Dorchester in Dorset and was made redundant in the summer.
While furloughed, she decided to move to Benfleet in Essex to be with her boyfriend, Barry Lingard, 26, a machine operator at a recycling centre.
She got a new job as a warehouse operative after she was made redundant and regularly worked overtime.
She said she was in a “bit of a daze” after discovering she had won £242,775.50 in the EuroMillions draw on November 27, with an online Lucky Dip entry.
“Barry and I met online towards the end of last year, before the pandemic changed all our lives, and we’d spend a lot of our time at weekends making the three-and-a-half-hour, 170-mile trip travelling to see each other,” said Ms Morton.
“I am divorced and I was just so happy to have met someone lovely again.
“When the pandemic struck, I was put on furlough and both Barry and I really wanted to be closer to each other, so I made the move to Essex to live with Barry and his family.
“I was then made redundant in the summer but immediately started looking for jobs in Essex and was lucky enough to find one in a local warehouse, which is where I’ve been working since.
“Essex is where we want to be and this life-changing win means that Barry and I can start looking for a house of our own – it will be amazing!
“The day that I found out I had won, which was on Saturday morning after the draw on Friday night, I was asked by my manager if I wanted to do some overtime.
“I think that’s the moment when the win started to sink in as, rather than having to weigh up the extra cash against extra hours, I was able to say straight away – and very politely – ‘No thanks!’”
As well as the search for a new home, Ms Morton is also planning to buy her hire purchase car outright and pay off her debts, and the couple hope to go on holiday somewhere warm, when it is safe to do so.
“It’s been a tough year but I couldn’t feel more lucky right now,” she said.
“This Christmas is going to be extra special.
“Like everyone else, we’re looking forward to a better year next year.”
– Samantha Morton matched the five main numbers and one Lucky Star number in the EuroMillions draw on November 27.