Lottery winner plans big celebration - with trip to Butlins

Pater Congdon won’t let £13.5 million lottery win change him - or his holiday plans

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Lottery winners

Peter Congdon, a 67-year-old City Councillor from Truro in Cornwall, picked up a massive cheque for £13.5 million this week. He was the lucky winner of last Wednesday's National Lottery quadruple rollover, and plans a major celebration. First on the list is the family holiday this summer - to Butlins in Minehead.

At the press conference announcing the biggest win so far this year, the great-granddad told the press, his first move on confirming that he was due to be millions of pounds better off was to make himself a cup of tea.

He has already taken the time to plan some early splurges. He'll be taking his family on holiday, but not to the Caribbean. he said: "We've been going to Butlin's for 40 years so this year won't be any different."

He will, however, splash out a little, and plans to buy Land Rovers for himself and his daughter - and new cars for his other two children too.

Modest purchases

It's good to see a lottery winner with his feet on the ground. His plans to stick to a tried and tested affordable summer holiday are a great contrast to those who make plans to spend the lot within the first 24 hours of being handed the enormous cheque.

There have been other lottery winners with equally modest ambitions. In January, when 70-year-old Doreen Hay from Teeside won £7.5 million, she said she wanted to buy a bungalow and a poodle - and take more regular trips to the Lake District. In March when a man from Alberta in Canada won $50 million on the lottery he said his first outlay would be to pay a parking fine - although he admitted he'd also be treating himself to a couple of cars too.

In 2013, when John Baxter from Baldock was asked what he had spent his £1 million winnings on so far, he replied he'd spent £9.99 on a pair of new slippers for his wife. He added that his wife had always wanted a stainless steel sink too. The couple didn't plan to move house because they'd just got it looking exactly the way they wanted it. They also intended to stick with their plans for a holiday in Great Yarmouth. He added: ""Money doesn't buy happiness and we are very happy just as we are, this is just incredible luck which we hope to share with our family."

Common purchases

In fact, a survey by Pixmania.com last year found that the most common first purchase for a lottery winner was a new washing machine, followed by a sofa and then an iPad. In fourth place was a new handbag and in fifth a football shirt.

Middlesex University Principal Lecturer in Psychology Mark Coulson says: "However much we might dream of winning the lottery, very few people actually believe it will ever happen to them. Although the extravagant items are now financially affordable, they are not yet psychologically affordable as they exist in an unfamiliar world - the world of the rich."

The real test is what happens next. In some cases lottery winners gradually come to see themselves as super-rich, and start splashing the cash - sometimes far faster than they can sustain. In other cases, winners keep their feet firmly on the ground, and devise a way for their win to make a difference to their lives over the long term.

Roberta and Barry Little from Dumfries won £1 million, but with Barry suffering an illness that left him unable to work, and three children to care for, they focused on making the win last a lifetime. After splashing out on a tumble dryer and a TV, they returned to their usual lifestyle, shopping in Lidl, driving a second hand car and holidaying in a Caravan.

There is a chance, therefore, that Congdon and his family will have many more great family holidays in Butlins to look forward to over the years.

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