The couple, Jess and Joe Thwaite
An England couple have emerged Britain’s biggest-ever lottery winners after scooping a jackpot of nearly £185 million ($230 million) in the EuroMillions draw.
Joe and Jess Thwaite, from Gloucester, on Thursday, May 19, called the unprecedented win “huge for us” as they claimed the record-breaking sum of £184,262,899.
The win was claimed with a ticket of randomly selected numbers earlier this month. The Thwaite’s jackpot sets a new record in Britain and is the second largest in the history of EuroMillions, which is played in the territories of nine European countries.
“It was amazing but also surreal,” said Joe, 49, who works at a communications company .
“I looked at the amount. I put the phone down and I picked the phone up again and I looked at the amount again!”
Joe said he had to contain his excitement by letting his wife keep sleeping until her alarm sounded before feeding her with the good news.
“He was like, ‘I’ve got a secret to tell you’,” recalled Jess, 44 who runs a hair salon with her mother and sister
“I was like ‘don’t be stupid!,” she said, adding they initially thought it was a joke and “obviously wrong”.
The couple plan to share their newly-amassed fortune with friends and family.
“This is an amazing thing that’s happened to us, and this means it’s an amazing thing that’s happened to our family and we want to share that with them,” said Jess, .
“Even though it’s wonderful and exciting, it’s also a massive relief for everybody that’s been struggling with all their bills.
“We’re like every normal family… so it’s just a huge relief.”
The Thwaite family with their two primary school-aged children and pets including horses, ponies, dogs are planning a rare family holiday and a new car purchase.
“We never go on holiday,” said Jess. “So our kids would just die to go to the sun and do that kind of thing,” she added, noting one favoured Hawaii while the other wanted to go to a Texas horse ranch.