Elderly woman finds the third lucky £5 note - and gives it away

Would you do the same in her shoes?

Charlie's Bar

A pensioner, who stumbled across a £5 note worth £50,000, has sent it back to the artist who created it, and asked for the money to be used to help young people.

See also: Bank of England to keep Ј5 polymer note despite animal rights activists' worries

See also: The new £10 note - can you make money from it?

See also: Cheeky eBay sellers asking thousands for 'upside down' £5 notes


The note was one of four engraved by Artist Graham Short with a tiny portrait of Jane Austen. The artworks were valued at £50,000 each, and then spent by the artist in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. It sparked millions of people to start holding their new plastic fivers up to the light, checking for the miniature engraving.

Two of the notes had already been found, and this was the third, which had originally been spent in a pub called Charlie's Bar, in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland.

It was found by a local woman, but she decided that she didn't want to be famous, so she sent it back to the artist, and asked him to sell it and use the money to help young people, He contacted the Daily Telegraph with the woman's letter, which read: "£5 note enclosed, I don't need t at my time of life. Please use it to help young people."

The artist's website says he is hoping to give it to an organisation connected with Children in Need "so we can honour the request of the lucky woman who originally discovered the note."

The discovery means there's just one remaining £5 featuring an engraving in circulation. This one has the serial number AM32885554.

Mature windfalls

She is not the first person to find themselves suddenly on the receiving end of a windfall at a ripe old age. Back in 2013, Gloria Mackenzie of Zephyrhills in Florida scooped an incredible $590 million on the lottery - and opted to take it as a single lump-sum of £370 million.

In 2003, the UK's oldest ever winner to go public was Reginald Smith, an 85-year-old from Uttoxeter in Staffordshire, who won £2.3 million. He told the BBC: "I would have liked it to have happened about 20 or 30 years ago, but there you are."

But both of these pale in comparison to Nguyen Van Het, from Vietnam, who won 7.6 billion Vietnamese Dong (about £235,000) in 2010 at the age of 97.

While some of the winners might have wished they had won when they were younger, arguably this could be the best time of life for a win. They have enough experience to put the win into perspective, which helps them keep their feet on the ground. They have also learned not to make rash decisions, and to prioritise what is important in life.

For the recipient of the third £50,000 £5 note, she obviously decided that what was important to her was doing her best for young people.

But what do you think. Would you have done the same thing in her position? Let us know in the comments.

Biggest UK lottery winners

Biggest UK lottery winners