Six people from Newhaven have been toasting their good fortune after their pub syndicate scooped £1million in the EuroMillions UK Millionaire Maker draw.
The syndicate of six from The Jolly Boatman,Lewes Road, who are now more than £166k better off, include the pub landlady, Charlotte Maynard, 33, her mother, Mary Maynard, 72, and pub regulars Michael Read, 49, Michael Fowler, 55, Michael Skinner, 48, and Maureen (Mo) Daly.
It was Michael Read, also known as Fudge, who bought the lucky ticket and decided to watch the draw show before popping in for a night cap on January 9.
When he saw the result, he immediately rang The Jolly Boatman and spoke to Charlotte.
Single mum of one Charlotte couldn’t stop screaming with joy and immediately ran upstairs to the flat to share the good news with her parents.
Syndicate leader Mary Maynard was alarmed when she heard Charlotte come screaming up the stairs.
She said: “I thought something awful had happened when Charlotte first appeared but when she shared the news, my panic quickly turned to joy. I turned to my husband of 37 years, Francis, and said, ‘come on, we’d better get glammed up, there’s Champagne to be drunk!’ and headed down to the bar.”
Charlotte said: “With the Champagne corks already popping I called Michael, but his wife said he was in bed with flu and couldn’t come to the phone.
“I said ‘I think he might want to get up for this news’.
“Amazing what a EuroMillions win can do, he made a rapid recovery and was celebrating in the pub half an hour later. The final Michael of the trio, Irish Mike, was delighted with the news too and also headed over. However tracking down Mo proved harder as she was on holiday in Mexico. We finally managed to get a message to her via Facebook and promised that her Champagne was still on ice.”
Mary, who has been in the pub trade for 40 years, said: “We’ve had The Jolly Boatman for more than 15 years and in that time met some genuinely lovely people. Our regulars really are the salt of the earth and their reaction to our good fortune shows what good people they are. Ultimately we will all be winners because some of the money will go towards sprucing the place up a bit to make it even nicer for our customers.”
Freshly back from her holiday in Mexico, Mo hailed a £166k windfall the perfect antidote to post holiday blues.
She said: “Knowing there was a lovely EuroMillions nest-egg, not to mention a knees-up with my fellow syndicate members waiting for me back at home made leaving Mexico a little easier. We had an amazing holiday, made all the better knowing that I won’t ever need to worry about money again. I can’t believe I’m secure for the rest of my life and if I fancied it, I could hop straight back on the plane and head off somewhere else. It’s an unbelievable feeling, I highly recommend it.”
The Jolly Boatman Six bought their winning ticket at The Co-op in Newhaven Square in Newhaven.
The pub’s other 20-strong syndicate recently celebrated a £2,500 win.