Time isn’t exactly running out for the mystery winner of a £33m cash prize to come forward and claim it (they have until April), but rather suspiciously, plenty of people have come forward claiming that they have the winning ticket.
The most famous claim (and the first publicly) was of a woman from Worcester, says that she left her lotto ticket in a pair of jeans and then ran them through the washer. The newsagent she claims sold her the ticket, the corners of the ticket are present, and the date says 2016 (though the rest of it is missing), and the numbers are readable. The barcode has since disappeared in the wash, though.
Camelot have been investigating the “winner’s” story to see if it checks out, and can confirm the winner did come from Worcester, but not that he newsagent mentioned is the place where the winning ticket was bought.
Several tests have been publicly done on “non-winning” tickets to see if the woman’s story checks out. Whilst it has been proven that a washing machine can completely disintegrate a ticket, it is unclear if the ticket would survive enough to be of any use, as the woman claims.
Hundreds of other people have now claimed the ticket is theirs, seemingly in a bid to falsely win the lotto prize, which is worth £33m.
The other half of the lotto prize (also £33m) was recently paid out to a couple in Scotland. Together the winners form the largest ever payout prize for the National Lottery since it first began in 1994. If no winners can be established by Camelot, then the funds will be handed to National Lottery projects up and down the country.