Man wins £500k after People’s Postcode Lottery ticket blunder | UK | News

An ecstatic engineer has scooped £500,000 on the People’s Postcode Lottery after a memorable mistake quadrupled his whopping win.  

Mark Wilson, from Borehamwood, made an incredibly lucky mistake that saw him end up with four tickets for his Hertfordshire postcode.

Now, the 62-year-old collector plans on adding to his stash of over 4,000 records, and he’ll even splash out on a house extension and loft conversion to make space for them all.

He said: “This has changed our lives forever. I’m a half-a-millionaire!”  

“I made a mistake when we were doing the direct debit and I pressed three instead of one, and I never bothered changing it because it’s going to charities, so that’s good.”

He added: “I then added another [ticket] through PayPal because I didn’t think the direct debit was working. I still don’t think it’s real, I’ll wake up in a minute.”  

Mark landed the windfall with four neighbours in Borehamwood after WD6 2SL won the lottery’s weekly £1m Millionaire Street prize on Saturday, July 6. Every ticket was worth £125,000. 

Mark first signed up to Postcode Lottery eight years ago and played with one ticket before cancelling for a short time.  

He then rejoined in December 2022, intending to put on just the one ticket, but despite realising his mistake he continued to pay for four tickets every month. 

And now that decision has paid off four times over as he and his wife Billie Wilson, 41, celebrated receiving four £125,000 cheques.

Vinyl lover Mark is now set to completely transform his house to make more room for his incredible record collection.

Mark said: “You have no idea how much room 4,000 records take up. We can get an extension and a loft conversion now.”  

Mark started growing the LP collection over 50 years ago and isn’t planning to stop now. He added: “From rock, pop, classical, reggae, you name it, I’ve got it, but I’ve still got my eye on more.  

“I don’t know what the world would be like without music. I love sitting down with a cuppa and relaxing to some music.” 

Mark’s vast collection includes all of The Beatles box sets and one of his prized possessions is a 1973 original pressing of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon.  

The Wilson’s house expansion plans will also include a new bathroom. Mark admitted that his wife has been asking him for a downstairs bathroom since they moved into the property over three years ago. 

Mark jokingly said: “You can have your toilet downstairs now dear. That’s all she’s interested in.”

Supermarket worker Billie said she’ll now be able to reduce her working hours, but she has no intention of quitting.  

Mark said: “She still wants to work at Tesco.” 

She grinned and replied: “Yeah but I won’t need to do as much overtime.”  

Despite his bumper win, Mark reported in for his shift at work moments after receiving the overwhelming news.  

Mark, who works at dairy company Arla Foods, said: “I’ve got a normal day ahead of me and I finish at 6pm, but I have to say my mind probably won’t be on the job.”  

The couple are now looking at a few more holiday options but they’ve been forced to cancel recent trips.  

Billie, who has autism, can often find social interaction challenging meaning the couple had to cancel a holiday to Egypt, and also missed Taylor Swift’s sold-out Wembley show.  

Mark added: “It was really sad because she’s always wanted to see Taylor Swift and we still have the tickets sitting there unused. But who knows, with this money one day it might happen.” 

The pair, who got married two and half years ago, already have a staycation booked in the Peak District but might look into going to Australia or America in the next few years. 

Adoring Mark said: “I’ve never been lucky apart from finding Billie. She’s changed my life and whatever we’ll do with the money, we’ll put it to good use.” 

The couple are looking forward to celebrating with their family, enjoying a bottle of non-alcoholic prosecco and having a record spinning in the background.  

The other four winners on Hackney Close bagged £125,000 each. They were all either unavailable or chose to remain anonymous.  

Former carer Billie was delighted to hear local charities are also benefitting from their win.  

She said: “We’ve always donated to charity, and the Postcode Lottery also helps a lot of animal charities, and we love animals.” 

Cecil’s Horse Sanctuary has been awarded £20,000 by Postcode Community Trust. 

Founded by Julie Blake in 2016, the charity gives suffering horses and ponies their forever home, when they have nowhere else to go. 

The charity is run solely by volunteers and looks after 80 animals including horses, Welsh ponies, Shetland ponies, a mule and a donkey. Many of the animals have come from bad living conditions, so the charity’s main aim is to ensure the animals are happy and live freely.  

“A lot of our animals come to us with health problems and often people simply don’t need them anymore and think the easiest option is to put them down. People don’t realise these animals can live for another 10 years with the right care. We give the animals the good life they deserve, and to be honest, they also look after us,” said Julie Blake, founder of Cecil’s Horse Sanctuary. 

The charity also serves the people in the community and organises regular meetups for local children and people with learning difficulties to meet the animals, which can act as therapy and aid children’s development.  

“The sanctuary is named after my father Cecil, who loved ponies and sadly passed away 14 years ago. After his passing, my miniature pony gave birth to a boy – so we named him Cecil, after dad. At just four weeks old, the pony was stolen from us – and has been missing ever since. We do what we do for all the Cecil’s out there. It keeps us going.” added Julie.  

Thanks to players of People’s Postcode Lottery, Cecil’s Horse Sanctuary will be able to set up a much-needed new fence in one of the fields, which will help keep the animals safe.  

“It’s such a relief to have been awarded such a generous amount of funding – we could not be more grateful,” said Julie. 

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