Lucky Loanhead residents were delighted this weekend to win a share of £3 Million, thanks to People's Postcode Lottery. It was a real family affair, as many relatives and neighbours celebrated together.
A total of 225 players won a share of the prize, as EH20 9 was revealed as January's Postcode Millions winning postcode sector. Selected winners were invited to a cheque presentation at Melville Castle in Edinburgh.
Audrey Coyle, 39, couldn't believe it when it was revealed she played with the full winning postcode – EH20 9LF – and scooped £187,500. "I can't believe it," she said. "This means we can pay off our mortgage, and I can maybe even work fewer hours because of this. It really means a lot."
And Audrey wasn't alone to pick up a big cheque on stage. Her sister, Michelle Harrison, also collected a £187,500 cheque on behalf of their mother, Gail Duncan, who was unable to attend. "Even though I don't play myself, I'm delighted that my mum and Audrey have won such huge amounts. I feel like I should get a percentage since I collected the money," Michelle joked.
The family intend to celebrate together very soon. With Audrey's 40th birthday coming up, as well as Gail's 60th, there are a lot of reasons to party.
"We have a family holiday booked to Lanzarote," said Audrey. "I'm sure we can help Michelle pay her share off now that my mum and I have won big."
Another pair of winning sisters at the event were Tricia Wellington and Pamela Semple, who won £5,338 and £10,670 respectively_. "We've both lived in Loanhead all our lives. The whole community has been buzzing over the announcement of our win; it's so lovely to celebrate together."_
Tricia and Pamela were both cheering on their cousin, Jillian Peacock, as she went on stage to collect her £187,500 cheque. "To win this amount is just baffling and completely life-changing," she said. "I've been playing for four years, so to win now is unreal. Today has been magical, and to win with my cousins has made it even more special."
Jillian, who works as a hairdresser, said that the win was completely surreal and would take a while to sink in. "It's not just amazing for me either," she said. "It's fantastic that players like myself have raised over £168 Million for charities. That's one of the reasons I signed up."
There were seven lucky players with the full winning postcode, six of whom scooped a massive £187,500. The seventh winner, who wishes to remain anonymous, played with two tickets and won £375,000.
People's Postcode Lottery Ambassador Judie McCourt, who handed over the cheques, added, "2017 has got off to a great start with our very first Postcode Millions of the year. As always, it was great to meet some happy winners today and find out how they'd like to spend their winnings. The best part of my job is handing out cheques, and it's nice to know that I've made a lot of people happy today."
See more photos from the day's celebrations in the Loanhead Postcode Millions Facebook album.
This weekend was lucky for other players too, as one £30,000 Street Prize landed in Gainsborough on Saturday, and the other Street Prize was won by players in Liverpool.