The jackpot had soared to the second-largest amount in EuroMillions history (worth €215 million) after a run of seven weeks without a winner, before it was won on Tuesday 10th May.
It was quickly announced that a ticket sold in the UK was the only winner, with the National Lottery confirming the next day that a claim had been staked for the nine-figure fortune.
The winners could have opted to stay anonymous and carried on with their lives in private, but instead they have shared their story with the world.
They were presented to the media on Thursday morning at the Ellenborough Park hotel in Cheltenham, where they spoke about the moment they found out about the win.
Joe checked the results the next morning and decided not to wake his wife straight away. Instead, he went on property website Rightmove and started looking at houses. When Jess woke, he said: “I’ve got a secret to tell you.”
They contacted the National Lottery and were given assurances that they had definitely won, but as it still needed to be ratified they decided to head into work as normal.
Joe, a communication sales engineer, said that his luck was generally so bad that he preferred for his wife to buy tickets. Jess, who runs a hairdressing salon, added that her dad had always dreamed of winning the lottery. When he died seven years ago, she began to play.
The couple, who are both in their 40s, have been married for 11 years. They have two children in primary school, while Joe has two children at university from a previous marriage. The win is set to make a huge difference to everyone in the family.
Deciding To Go Public
Asked why they had decided to go public, the Thwaites said they wanted to take the pressure off anyone else who they might want to help out. Joe explained: “We don't want to say 'this is a secret, you've got to keep it.”
They are keen to take friends and family members on ‘amazing holidays’ and support them as much as possible. However, Jess admitted it had not been an easy decision.
She said: "I've been really worried about going public. We want to protect the people we love. But I feel this is the way that we can be honest to them all."
The previous record for the biggest win in the UK belonged to a player who scooped £170 million in October 2019. They remained anonymous so no more details were disclosed about where the ticket was sold.
A woman from French Polynesia still holds the title of the biggest-ever EuroMillions winner, having banked €220 million last October.
To give yourself a chance of becoming the next big winner, make sure to take part in draws every Tuesday and Friday night.