EuroMillions jackpot win ‘dream come true’ for family syndicate

Ireland’s 175 million euro (£153 million) EuroMillions jackpot winners went by bus to take their ticket to lottery headquarters after the family syndicate struck gold last month.

Gerry Brown, whose wife is a member of the winning group, said they have had a “hectic” time meeting financial advisers as they decide what to do with the largest jackpot in Ireland’s history.

The family, from Co Dublin,  were presented with their winning cheque on Thursday.

The winning ticket was sold at Reilly’s Daybreak newsagents in The Naul, in the north of the county.

EuroMillions lottery
Michael Hayes (left) from the National Lottery sprays champagne as Les Reilly and the staff of Reilly’s Daybreak in Naul celebrate selling the winning ticket (Niall Carson/PA)

Mr Brown, who said he was keen to buy a bike, recalled the shock his wife felt when she checked her numbers and realised she had won.

He told RTE’s Today with Sean O’Rourke radio show on Friday: “She could hardly talk, I was nearly going to get an ambulance for her.”

His wife placed the ticket in an Argos catalogue for safekeeping overnight before travelling on the bus the next day to Ireland’s National Lottery headquarters.

There was huge media focus on their local village before the family’s identity was revealed and Mr Brown said waiting media were oblivious as they passed, and even waved to them from the bus having deposited the ticket.

He praised residents in The Naul for having kept quiet about who the family were and where they lived, describing it as a “lovely place to live”.

He added that the family, all of whom he said were retired, were keen to get back to normality after the massive win.

🗣️Statement from Gerry Brown, spokesperson from Dublin family syndicate which collected cheque for €175.4 million at Lotto HQ yesterday 🍾 pic.twitter.com/6LG3i9jtMc

— The Irish National Lottery (@NationalLottery) March 1, 2019

He said: “I would be hoping to get back to it (normal life). I’d rather just go back the way I was. Happy enough before I won it so I don’t want it to change too much.”

Mr Brown, a keen cyclist, said he hopd to buy a bike – possibly worth around 15,000 euro (£13,000) –  with some of the winnings.

He said: “For me, I’ll probably buy one of the best bikes you can buy. I’m mad into cycling so that’s the only thing I’d be thinking of.”

After claiming the win Mr Brown, in a statement released through the Irish National Lottery, said: “This is life-changing for all of the family and we are absolutely thrilled.

“We have spent the last week getting independent legal and financial advice, and our win is slowly sinking in.

“We are a very close family and this is a dream come true for us. We want this win to change our lives in a positive way.”

National Lottery chief executive Dermot Griffin said: “I am absolutely thrilled for the family and it was a pleasure meeting them in National Lottery HQ and to share their excitement and joy.

“Happy days like this is part of what playing National Lottery games is all about. This has been a historic few weeks for us with our biggest ever jackpot payout.”