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Warwickshire neighbours share £1m prize fund after lottery postcode win





ONE million pounds has been shared between seven neighbours in Alcester after they came up trumps on the People’s Postcode Lottery.

Seven won £125,000 each while one resident – who had two lottery tickets – scooped £250,000 after B49 6PX landed the Postcode Lottery’s weekly millionaire street prize.

The postcode – arguably now one of the town’s wealthiest – covers an over 60s housing complex close to St Benedict’s School.

Among the winners was retired teacher Graham Duffill, 83, who plans to live out his boyhood dreams behind the wheel of a classic car.

Former teacher Graham Duffill, 83, is going to buy a classic car with some of his winnings.
Former teacher Graham Duffill, 83, is going to buy a classic car with some of his winnings.

The dad-of-three, who was a tech teacher for more than 30 years, said: “It’s going to make people’s lives much easier. I’m a big petrolhead, so I’ll upgrade my car… a 140mph job.”

He added: “The best car I’ve ever driven is a Toyota MR2, they just don’t make them like that anymore, but I’d like one.”

Graham also plans to help his three sons and send some of his winnings to friends in Africa where, after retiring aged 50, he spent 25 years living in Eswatini and worked as a volunteer training teachers.

Evelyn Evans, 73, was the biggest winner – her two tickets saw her collect £250,000. The grandmother-of-10 plans to take her whole family on holiday as well as ticking off a bucket list trip of her own.

But she insists she won’t be quitting her part-time job sourcing spare parts for military helicopters.

She said: “I’ve always worked, they’ll be carrying me off in a box and I’ll still be typing on the computer, ringing a customer or sending an email.”

Evelyn will, however, take a break to visit Norway. “I think my friend and I could go to the Norwegian fjords next year. It would be something else to see the Northern Lights, that’s on my bucket list – so I’ll tick that one off.”

Dance teacher and grandmother of three, Victoria Whitehouse, 93, waltzed off with £125,000.

Evelyn Evans, 73, was the biggest winner – her two tickets saw her collect £250,000.
Evelyn Evans, 73, was the biggest winner – her two tickets saw her collect £250,000.

“It’s like a fairytale” she said. “At my age group, it’s an unbelievable amount of money. My late husband earned £12-a-week when we got married. I can’t get my head around it. My poor bank manager is going to have a fit.”

Victoria has only lived at the address for two years after advice from her daughter to move to the retirement complex.

She said: “It’s the best move I’ve ever made.”

Victoria started dancing in Solihull before performing in theatres around Britain. She also starred in a few commercials and spent the latter part of her career as a choreographer for a local musical society.

As well as handing out winnings to Alcester residents, there was also money for good causes.

Alcester Day Care received £15,000 from the Postcode Community Trust.

Carole Zambonini, the founder and chairman, said: “I couldn't believe it when I received the news of the funding. The biggest amount we’d ever received was £1,000 so this is incredible. We can get so much with the £15,000 thanks to players of People’s Postcode Lottery, and we’re just eternally grateful.”

Carole, who lost her mother to dementia, set up Alcester Day Care to support people with dementia and memory issues and their carers.

“It’s like a fairytale,” said Victoria Whitehouse, 93, who won £125,000.
“It’s like a fairytale,” said Victoria Whitehouse, 93, who won £125,000.

“There is a big stigma around dementia and there shouldn’t be,” she said. “Our work started off as a café open twice a week where people struggling with dementia and their carers could come in and meet up with others, giving them a sense of community and somewhere to share their highs and lows.”

While the Alcester Cafe still runs twice a week, the Alcester Day Care has taken the mission of dealing with dementia one step further. Open the other three days of the week, it’s a safe space for carers to confidently leave their loved ones, knowing they will be looked after and cared for. The service takes on a maximum of 12 people per day, ensuring everyone gets the best care possible and all the attention they need.

There was also £75,000 for Wixford Village Hall to help with the building of a new facility that’s due to be competed in May.

And 1st Alcester Scout Group was given £20,000 to continue its work and support with young people in the town.

Neighbours and winners in Alcester.
Neighbours and winners in Alcester.


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