I won £170k lottery jackpot using my late husband’s tickets… but the first phone call I made wasn’t to family | The Sun

A WIDOW scooped nearly £170,000 using her late husband’s lottery tickets but revealed the first phone call wasn’t to her family.

Lesley McNally, 54, kept playing the People’s Postcode Lottery after her husband Garry suffered a fatal heart attack in September 2021, having celebrated his 60th birthday just five days earlier.

The mum-of-three cried when it was revealed their postcode – M27 9UY – had landed the sizeable sum as part of the first ever Millionaire Street prize in Swinton, Greater Manchester.

Lesley said: “I’m happy that I’ve won, and the family have won. But it is tinged with sadness, because we had played for a long time and Garry’s not here to see it.

“This is a life-changing amount of money for me and Gaz.”

Lesley, a car dealership administrator, had been with Garry since she was 16 and they were married for 37 years before he died.

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The couple had moved into their semi-detached bungalow eight months earlier and the builder and decorator had been tackling renovations at the time.

Their three sons – Alan, 35, a roofing firm boss, Matthew, 32, a fireman, and Steven, 29, a sound technician on ITV soap Emmerdale – are helping out their mum.

Grandmother Lesley said: “We played Postcode Lottery in the old house and continued to play when we moved here. We had a bigger house, then the boys all left, and we downsized.

“This is where we would have lived forever. But eight months later Gaz had a sudden heart attack five days after his 60th birthday.

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“If he was here, he would have started building. After we moved in, he had the roof off in a day.

“Now I’ll just enjoy it and do what we wanted to do.”

This solves a lot of things. Garry passed away very suddenly and there wasn’t a plan. This just makes the plan

She added: “I feel sick, I’m just overwhelmed… I really don’t know how to feel.

“This solves a lot of things. Garry passed away very suddenly and there wasn’t a plan. This just makes the plan.

“There are just so many emotions that went through my head. It’s unbelievable and will change the family’s lives. It will all be shared. It’ll help me and the boys.”

Garry’s Postcode Lottery tickets also won the family £2,000 in July 2022.

Son Alan thinks their dad is looking down on them.

He said: “I’m not a spiritual person, but when we were paying for dad’s headstone, mum got the £2,000 win – and now this.”

Brother Steven added: “This is amazing, it’s massive for my mum. It has been difficult times.”

Lesley said: “When I saw the Postcode Lottery in the street, I thought it was the Labour Party canvassing for votes, because of the red clothing.

“I was on my way to work. But I phoned my boss to say that I was going to be late.”

She added: “It’s just lovely that other people in the street won, too. People struggle at the moment, so I don’t want to be ‘I won’ when other people are struggling. But because other people are sharing in the win, I don’t feel so guilty.”

In all, nine people with the Moss Bank Road postcode shared £1million in the first ever weekly Millionaire Street prize, with each ticket worth £83,333.

Lesley’s neighbour Chris Leonard, 64, picked up the biggest prize on the street – £249,999, thanks to having three tickets.

Chris now has his eye on getting a red Mercedes CLA 220d and splashing out on a holiday at a five-star hotel in Anglesey, Wales, which will also accept his dogs Rosie and Poppy.


Chris, a civil servant, who celebrated with his wife Elisa, 59, said: “This is going to make a mind-blowing difference.

“We got the biggest shock of our lives when we saw the amount. I didn’t sleep the night before because of expectations of what we could win.

“Elisa promised me a car and maybe Mercedes will phone me now.”

He added: “It was just a whim when we signed up for Postcode Lottery. We saw an advert on TV and I said to Elisa, ‘let’s have a go’.”

Chris’s next-door neighbour Dolores Santos, a retired community nursery nurse, is looking to revamp her home after she pocketed £83,333.

The mum-of-one, 66, collected her cheque with Jason Devlin, 53, her partner of 30 years.

Dolores said: “I feel quite giddy. This will make a massive difference to our lives. We moved into his house not two years ago.

“We’ll be able to renovate it with a new kitchen, new roof, front garden – and get it rendered.”

Also picking up £83,333 was Angela Greenhalgh, 51 who phoned her boss for a duvet day, after she heard the news along with husband John.

The couple are now hoping to help their daughters, Natasha, 27, a primary school teacher, and Madison, 23, an admin worker, with deposits for their first homes.

Angela, who is an administrator for the Greater Manchester Fire & Rescue Service, is also eying a new car so she can use the private reg plates she got for her 50th birthday.

She said: “This is a good feeling, but I’m still a bit shocked and overwhelmed.


“We can help our daughters out. I might also treat myself to a new car. I got private plates for my 50th but I can’t put them on because my car is too old.”

Hubby John, 55, an engineering firm press operator, said: “If she shows me the bank statement and I look at it, I just won’t believe it.

“We can even get the dog posher biscuits now!”

People’s Postcode Lottery ambassador Matt Johnson visited the winners to present them with their prize.

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He said: “It was an amazing day in Swinton as we launched our mega £1 million weekly prize. I loved surprising the winners and hearing how they plan on treating themselves and their families.

“I already can’t wait to visit the next Millionaire Street – I wonder whose door I’ll be knocking on next.”

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