North East steel plant again strikes lucky again with lottery win

Lottery lightning strikes twice at North East steel plant SSI as lottery syndicate scoops £1m on EuroMillions

SSI based lottery syndicate, Balls of Steel celebrate winning £1,000,000 in the Euromillions Raffle on New Years Eve
SSI based lottery syndicate, Balls of Steel celebrate winning £1,000,000 in the Euromillions Raffle on New Years Eve

Lady luck has struck in the same place for one North East company, after staff won the lottery for the second time.

Sahaviriya Steel Industries (SSI) is one lucky place to work, after a 27-strong syndicate scooped £1m in the EuroMillion UK Millionaire Raffle draw on New Year’s Eve.

The win comes just three months after a 30-strong syndicate, also from SSI Steel, won £288,743.10 on EuroMillions in September 2013.

The aptly named Balls of Steel syndicate, who all work as part of the day shift crew at SSI Steel, based in Redcar, Teesside, found out they had each pocketed £37,037 when syndicate leader, Mark Richardson, checked the tickets on New Year’s Day. The 54-year-old said: “I decided to check the tickets on my phone and discovered we’d won £7 on the EuroMillions.

“I was struggling to see the raffle codes so I logged on to the computer and printed them off. It wasn’t until I came to the last line that I realised we had a matching number.

“I called to my wife and said to her ‘does that number match’ and she replied ‘yes it does’.”


After checking his ticket a dozen times and still unable to believe his eyes, the married father-of-two called The National Lottery to confirm the win. Mr Richardson said: “It was really nerve wracking calling The National Lottery as I thought they were going to say I hadn’t won. But after confirming the details they said we had won £1m.”

Once the win had been confirmed the SSI employee immediately called the rest of the syndicate members to tell them the good news.

“Everyone thought I was winding them up when I called to say we’d won,” Mr Richardson said.

“One of the syndicate, Josh Ferguson, is an apprentice so I said that I would pay for his ticket. He was delighted when I called him and told him the news.”

Syndicate members include Simon Douglas, 29, Gary Lamming, 32, Tony Kay, 24, Steven Ditchburn, 32, and Andrew Amos, 30. Members of the syndicate are now all looking forward to spending their winnings and treating themselves to new cars, holidays and watches. Mr Richardson said: “We didn’t have any plans to go away this year but we’ll definitely be taking a holiday now.”

The Balls of Steel syndicate has been playing EuroMillions for two years and have vowed to continue to play. The winning ticket was bought from the Spar shop in Nunthorpe, Teesside. The Millionaire Raffle selection drawn was GRG911485 in the special draw on New Year’s Eve that guaranteed to create 25 millionaires.


David Whetstone
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Graeme Whitfield
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Stuart Rayner
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