Plymouth's overnight National Lottery millionaires and how they blew it all


It's hard to believe 39 people in Plymouth became overnight millionaires in the past two decades.

But it's true - thanks to those one -in-a-million lottery numbers, Plymouth winners have been handed wads of cash to do whatever they desire with.

From glamour models and fancy cars to big-dollar trips to Las Vegas - Plymouth's lottery millionaires didn't hold back on splashing their rewards on whatever they wanted.

Some disappeared without a trace with their bank accounts full, while others fared less well with their new-found wealth.

We decided to take a look back at some of our city's infamous overnight millionaires - and how they blew it all.

Pete Kyle - one of Britain's biggest wins

Peter Kyle struck lucky on the National Lottery in 2005 and won a mind-blowing £5.1million - but sadly a few years later he was penniless.

The Plymouth dad, then 52, guessed all six numbers right to win the Lotto draw 18 years ago.

Mr Kyle, a Royal Artillery gunner said at the time: "It is going to change my family’s life."

But three years later he was reportedly broke and on benefits - after squandering an eye-watering £4,600 a day.

Tabloid newspapers claimed that the Plymouth dad spent large amounts of money on luxury homes, flash cars and holidays following his jackpot and it was said to be one of Britain’s biggest ever Lottery wins at the time.

But the sparkle soon dimmed, and by April 2008 the winner had lost his Derriford mansion, and was reportedly living in a £15-a-night hotel on Union Street, according to The Sun.

But let's rewind slightly to Mr Kyle's big win, before he lost it all.

“I had been out on Saturday night so by the time I got home it was late and I forgot all about checking my numbers," Mr Kyle told The Herald at the time.

“It wasn’t until Sunday morning that I remembered to get my ticket and check the numbers on Teletext.

“When I found out I’d matched all six and that I was the only winner, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing and I had to take a breath – it was like a dream.”

Mr Kyle phoned his daughter Gemma, then 20, as soon as he learned of his big win, and said she screamed down the phone she was that excited.

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"Gemma double-checked the numbers for me but there was no mistaking it – I’d won the jackpot and spent the rest of the day at home taking it in," he said.

'All our lives are going to change'

And the winning streak just kept coming for Mr Kyle. On the Monday night, he went out on the town celebrate with friends at Devonport's Mecca Bingo - and won £500.

"I’ve always had a bit of luck of the Irish,” said Pete.

“I won’t want for anything any more. I’ve always had nought but now everything’s going to change. All our lives are going to change.”

His first big buy was a fishing boat and some new tackle, so he could take to the water in style.

He also decided he wanted a Nissan Patrol four-wheel drive car.

But he said his main priority would be to secure the future for his two children, Gemma and Roy, who was then 11, as well as treating them both to holidays.