The winning group is called Little Ray’s syndicate and it was formed in the parish of Drumgoon, which is situated just a few miles south of the Irish border. The syndicate was set up as part of a fundraising project for GallonRay House community centre in Maudabawn, Co. Cavan.
People in the local community, including many parents of children who would benefit from the proposed after-school schemes, donated €100 to the project. In return for the support, organisers used around a quarter of the €30,000 fundraising target to purchase 100 lines of EuroMillions numbers for every draw over a ten-week period. Everyone who donated was in line to receive a share of any payouts.
The winning numbers in the 21st January EuroMillions draw were 10, 11, 24, 36, and 46, with Lucky Stars 3 and 5. The record-breaking syndicate had one ticket that matched five of those numbers plus one Lucky Star to win €256,142 - each member of the syndicate received around €868.
Aidan McCabe, the chairman of the community centre, said: “It’s a modest enough sum for each individual, but it’s lovely to see the money coming back to the community. We won €40 one week and €60 another week, and we thought we’d be giving back about €2.50 to people.” He went on to talk about the impact the win would have and the importance of places like Gallonray house.
“The day is gone when latches are left off doors and when you’d see milk lorries going up and down the lanes,” he said. “Rural isolation is very real, and we need places like this to try and counter it.”
McCabe said that the €256,000 prize was almost exactly the same amount that had been raised for the centre over the last 40 years. The money raised will go towards converting the centre’s attic to use for after-school activities for local children.
The syndicate’s winning ticket was bought from Hannigan’s Bar & Grocery in Cootehill Town, Co. Cavan. After his store was revealed as the one that sold the lucky entry, owner Sean Hannigan said: “The whole town has gone absolutely mad since word got out about the win.
“Because we have a bar and grocery store, locals would have known about the win since last night so there’s a lot of excitement and a lot of celebrating going on in the town this morning, it’s absolutely incredible.”
The 21st January EuroMillions draw was also a lucky one for another Irish player. One ticket purchased at the Applegreen service station in Kimmage, South Dublin, hit the €500,000 EuroMillions Plus jackpot. No word about the winner has been revealed, but the Irish Lottery encouraged players in the area to check their tickets.
The next EuroMillions draw takes place on Tuesday 25th February and offers a jackpot worth €51 million. Purchase your entries from any lottery retailer in Ireland or choose your numbers online.