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Belmullet family scoops €11m jackpot

Belmullet lotto win
The Brogan sisters, Annette and Mandy celebrate the sale of the €11 million winning Lotto ticket at their Eurospar shop in Belmullet, with staff, Annette’s daughter Aileen, and Mary B Walsh, manager.?Pics: Brian Farrell

Mayo family scoops €11m lotto jackpot

Word of the Belmullet family’s lucky Lotto win spreads like wildfire

Anton McNulty

Mayo’s latest lotto millionaires are still in shock and are ‘taking in’ their newfound fortune and after scooping the €11 million Lotto jackpot.
Mother-of-four Evelyn McIntyre from Ballyglass near Belmullet won the massive jackpot after buying a €4 quick-pick ticket along with her shopping in Brogan’s Eurospar in Belmullet last Friday evening.
However, she seems to be in no hurry to claim her prize after the National Lottery confirmed to The Mayo News on Monday afternoon that nobody has contacted them to claim the win.
The family home was besieged by national journalists over the weekend, but the family were keeping their emotions to themselves. When contacted by The Mayo News yesterday, a member of the family said they were making no comment, other than to say they were ‘shocked’ at the big win and they ‘taking it all in at the moment’.

Biggest win
The €11 million jackpot is the largest jackpot won by a ticket sold in Mayo since the Lottery was established in 1987, and it is the largest single jackpot winner this year. However, it is not the largest jackpot to be claimed by Mayo people – that honour went to an anonymous Claremorris couple who won €13.1 million after buying the winning ticket in Dalkey in Co Dublin in May 2009.
Three Lotto jackpots have been won in Mayo this year – a jackpot worth €2 million was won in Westport last June, and a €3.8 million jackpot was won in Louisburgh last July. Both jackpots were claimed by persons from the west of Ireland who wished to remain anonymous.

Talk of the town
Evelyn and her family found out she had scooped the massive jackpot after checking her numbers on Saturday evening. Within hours, news of the jackpot win spread like wildfire around the Mullet peninsula.
The identity of the winners was all that was talked about outside Mass on Sunday morning as locals wondered who were the ‘secret millionaires’ in their mist. When the identity became public knowledge, locals were delighted, with the family described as ‘one of the nicest you will ever meet’.
Evelyn who is originally from the Binghamstown area is married to Martin and have four children, three daughters, Stephanie, Sandra, Michelle, and one son, Shane, who is the youngest of the family.
Parish Priest Fr Kevin Hegarty told The Mayo News that people knew very quickly who the winners were and he and the whole parish was delighted for the family. “They are a lovely modest unassuming family and I wish them every joy and happiness that a win like this will bring. They are a really lovely family and the kind of people everyone would wish well,” he said.
The win brought a real buzz around Belmullet on Sunday morning and nowhere more so than in Brogan’s Eurospar, which sold the winning ticket. It is the first jackpot win for the store, which is now expected to claim a prize of €15,000 for selling the ticket.
As the champagne popped in Belmullet, Annette Howard of Brogan’s Eurospar joked that she thought they were more excited than the winners.
“There is a great buzz about the place with champagne at the door and everyone is sharing in the congratulations and we only sold the ticket,” she joked. “It is the biggest prize we have won since we started selling the lotto tickets, we never had a winner before, full stop.
“I found out at about 10pm [on Saturday night] when a rep from the Lotto who comes to the shop phoned us up. I thought he was having us on … we couldn’t believe it. It is brilliant news and a great boost to the area and is a nice change to all the doom and gloom. This news is badly needed because so many people are out of work and good news like this will give the place a bit of a boost.”
Sinn Féin councillor Rose Conway-Walsh said she was delighted for the family and also said the win was a boost to the area. “I am delighted for them because they are the type of family who have worked hard all their lives and they deserve all the luck they get. I wish them all well in the future. In these bad times it has brought a great sense of joy to the area … everyone is delighted for them.”
The winning quick-pick numbers were 2, 7, 19, 23, 33 and 43.