We missed out on an £8.5 million lottery prize for a heart-wrenching reason – but 6 years later we won the Euromillions
A couple who missed out on an £8.5million lottery jackpot when their usual weekly numbers were called the one week they didn’t buy a ticket bagged a £4.8million prize a few years later.
Sue and Lee Mullen, who usually bought a ticket every week, were struggling to get by after their daughter was born in 2005, and spent their last pennies on nappies for her the week their numbers came in.
After feeling like they had missed their chance, which would never come again, the couple, from Grimsby, told The Sun they were ‘gutted’.
But in 2011, they won a Euromillions jackpot and claimed nearly £5million, in what they described as an ‘unbelievable’ turn of events.
Since winning the jackpot, the couple have been living the high life – but they have remained grounded too.
Sue and Lee Mullen, from Grimsby, won £4.8million in the Euromillions lottery in 2011
At the time of the win, carer Sue said it was a literal ‘dream come true’ after she’d had a premonition just weeks earlier that she had won £4.6million on the lottery.
Lee explained the couple had bought lottery tickets every single week using the same numbers for years, a combination which was made up of dates that were special to the couple.
But the one week their numbers came out on top, they hadn’t bought a ticket because they were struggling with their finances following the birth of their daughter.
Former navy engineer Lee explained their decision was between ‘nappies or the lottery’ and of course, their daughter came first.
The couple, who said they were ‘gutted’ at missing out on the first jackpot, had bought nappies for their daughter instead of a lottery ticket
They were managing on just £300 per week in benefits with their three children and another from a previous relationship.
Lee had been released from the Navy due to a nerve condition and was living on his veteran’s pension. Sue had had to give up work because she was suffering with back problems following a car accident.
The couple got by going around car boot sales for bargains and scouring supermarkets for cheap offers.
They only began playing the lottery again a few weeks before their big win – and Sue was so shocked, she couldn’t believe it had really happened.
‘I checked the numbers online on Saturday and couldn’t believe it. I kept checking again and again,’ she recalled.
Lee explained the couple’s finances were so tight at the time, he couldn’t even call his loved ones to tell them about the win because he didn’t have enough credit on his phone.
Following the win, the couple planned trips to Mauritius and Disneyland, paying for Sue to get a passport so she could go.
Since bagging the jackpot, the couple have lent their wealth to charitable causes.
They founded The Mullen Foundation, which focuses on helping children and young people in North East Lincolnshire.