Eight neighbours in Downend are celebrating today as their postcode, BS16 5RH, has won Sunday's #30KADAY Street Prize. Seven of the residents landed £30,000 each, while the eighth doubled their prize to £60,000 thanks to playing with two tickets.
One lucky couple had more reason to celebrate than most as their win means they can now explore their dream of expanding their family through IVF. Ellie, who netted £30,000, found out about her prize during a video call with Street Prize Presenter Judie McCourt.
When Judie revealed her prize cheque, an emotional Ellie hugged her husband, Cameron, and said, "Oh that's amazing! That's incredible. I can't believe it." Ellie added, "We've just had a baby this year via IVF, so if we want another baby, that will definitely go towards that, which would be lovely."
The couple had put plans for a sibling for their baby daughter, Harriet, to the back of their minds due to the cost of IVF. A midwife and an obstetrician at a local hospital, Ellie and Cameron met on the maternity ward eight years ago when working together delivering babies on Christmas Day. They had no idea they would face their own fertility struggle but were delighted when support from their parents meant they could fund the IVF treatment through which 7-month-old Harriet was conceived.
The unexpected lottery win now has the couple thinking about growing their family much sooner than expected. Ellie said, "The money means the world to us as we know it's there if we need to fund further IVF."
Ellie had an idea of what to spend the rest of her prize money on. She said, "An extension on the house. We haven't got a downstairs toilet and for trying to potty train a baby it would be nice to have a downstairs loo!" Cameron laughed and added, "And to accommodate another baby."
Neighbour Heather, a well-known face on the street, also won £30,000. Upon seeing her cheque, she exclaimed, "Oh my God! That's amazing. I can't believe it." Her husband Sebastian was with her and couldn't believe their luck. He said, "I feel weak at the knees. That's unbelievable."
Heather, a local schoolteacher, had a long-awaited family reunion in mind after seeing her five-figure prize. She said, "My brother and nephew live in Perth, Australia and I haven't seen them for five years and neither have my mum and dad.
"It came up on Facebook last night - a picture of all the kids together with my mum and dad exactly five years ago. My parents are always saying, 'How often are we going to be going out to Australia now?' So, to fulfil my mum and dad's wish to have all the grandkids together again would be brilliant."
Another winner, Cath, played with two tickets and scooped a whopping £60,000. She joyfully reacted, "Oh wow. Oh, that's going to make such a difference. That's amazing, absolutely amazing."
The mum-of-two intends to use some of the winnings for house renovations. She said, "We're putting plans through to do a loft extension and an extension on the back of our house, so that will come in super handy. We can have a really posh kitchen now rather than your basic one!"
Cath was delighted to hear that seven of her neighbours had also picked up a Street Prize. She said, "We've got a lovely street WhatsApp messaging group, so if anyone has got anything they don't need they put out a message.
"It's really brought the community together in lockdown, so it's lovely to think people on my street will benefit from this. It's really lovely."
Frank was another lucky £30,000 winner. He found out while sat on his sofa with his wife, Sue. After seeing his prize cheque, Frank shouted, "Oh my God!" Sue added, "Have we won that much? Oh, that's amazing, I can't believe that. You don't know what that means to us. I feel like it's a dream and someone is going to wake me up."
At the forefront of their minds following their win was their family. Sue said, "My three grandchildren, we might give them something extra special as well. They live up in Northampton, they'll be so excited for us."
The couple are both retired and have been dreaming of buying a holiday home in Dorset. Sue said, "We really want to buy a little holiday mobile home down in Poole. We were going to sell our home and downsize to enable us to do it, but who knows now."
After the video call Judie McCourt congratulated all the winners and said, "I was so pleased to bring this incredible surprise to some of our lucky winners in Downend, I couldn't be happier for them! It was amazing hearing how they plan to spend their winnings - it certainly sounds like an amazing street to live on."
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