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Best Friends Lolly and Polly Claim £15.3 Million Lotto Jackpot

Last Updated: Wednesday 22nd February 2017, 13:53

Two best friends from Tyne and Wear are coming to terms with winning a Lotto jackpot of £15.3 million. Lorraine Smith and Paula Barraclough successfully matched the numbers 11, 13, 21, 37, 49 and 59 in the draw on Saturday 18th February to land the eight-figure sum that had been steadily building since the final draw of January.

The pair, known as Lolly and Polly, were presented to the media on Wednesday at a National Lottery press event at Lumley Castle in Chester-le-Street, and it was clear that the enormity of their win hadn’t quite hit home. Lorraine, who works as a cook in a care home, told reporters: “The news really is still sinking in. I thought I was hallucinating - I just thought this can’t really be happening. It was only when I got on the phone to Camelot I realised my best friend and I really were millionaires!”

The lucky Lotto fan continued, regaling the media with the tale of how she bought the winning ticket, “I always stay at my mum’s house on Friday night. I was full of cold when I woke up on Saturday morning and went out to the bus stop at 6:30am for my journey to work.” The bus Lorraine was due to catch failed to turn up, meaning that she was forced to seek warmth in a nearby newsagents. “I discovered I had a £2 coin and some loose change in my pocket so I popped into the local shop and bought a Lucky Dip Lotto ticket.” Little did the mother-of-one know that this decision would soon change her life forever.

Best friend Paula, who works as a barista, recalled the moment she received the news every Lotto player longs to hear. “I was in bed on Sunday morning and the phone rang at 7:15am. Lorraine never calls this early,” she muttered. “I picked up the phone and said to her ‘You better be calling to tell me that we have won the lottery waking me up at this time!’” The voice on the other end of the line replied: “We have! We have all six numbers!”

The friends have already planned on how to spend some of their winnings. Paula, who currently lives with her parents, is determined to find a place of her own: “This win is life-changing, it means I will finally be able to move into a house of my own, rather than living with my parents and I can start to write my dream shopping list.” Meanwhile, Lorraine has something far simpler in mind for her first purchase: “I literally threw my old frying pan away the day before I became a multi-millionaire so a new frying pan will definitely be one of the first things I will be buying.”    

The pals, who purchased their winning ticket from McColl Newsagents on Park Lane in Sunderland, will now turn their collective attention to tonight’s Lotto draw: “We will certainly be continuing to play,” Lorraine beamed.

The pair were not the only ones celebrating a big lottery win, as a single mum from Bradford also picked up a EuroMillions cheque worth £14.5 million on the same day.

If you fancy your chances of following in the footsteps of Lolly and Polly, tonight’s Lotto jackpot is worth a guaranteed £2 million. Tickets are available to purchase online or from any authorised retailer. Good luck!

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