Close call as man tosses winning lottery ticket in bin

A lucky couple has netted nearly £1.9 million on the lottery - after the wife retrieved the winning ticket from their recycling bin.

When the ticket failed to win the Wednesday draw late last month, Richard Buss threw it away. But his wife, Dione, later remembered that the ticket was a weekly one, covering the Saturday night draw as well, and retrieved it - only to discover their massive win.

"We actually found out we'd won on Sunday night but it was really late and we couldn't speak to anyone from Camelot until 9am on the Monday," says Mrs Buss. "I didn't sleep a wink that night, I didn't even try – I watched the TV and did the ironing instead."

The couple now plan to use some of their winnings to travel the world - they want particularly to visit the Great Wall of China - and to raise funds for a unit at Bristol's Frenchay Hospital where Mrs Buss is receiving treatment for MS. The are also hoping to buy a classic car and to build their own house.

"We still haven't actually bought anything with our winnings yet, but the main thing that our jackpot win will give us is quality time together, and it will enable us to treat our nearest and dearest," says Mrs Buss.

In some cases, where winners can remember where and when they bought their ticket, the lottery will pay out. That wasn't the case, though, when Martyn and Kay Tott lost their winning ticket - worth £3,011,065 - in 2001. Because the Totts had failed to alert Camelot within 30 days, their claim was declared invalid.

Whenever a winner fails to come forward, Camelot receives calls from people falsely claiming to have bought and lost the ticket. Most such claims are easy to dismiss, as it's easy to check where and when the ticket was bought.

This latest case was by no means the closest call ever. In the past, winning tickets have been retrieved from a bin that was just about to be collected, from down the back of a sofa and from the make-up bag of the winner's secretary. Camelot recommends that people play online, as winners will then be notified by email.

The richest self-made Brits

The richest self-made Brits