Frenzy forces Lotto winner into hiding

IRELAND’S newest multimillionaire has been forced into hiding because of the media frenzy surrounding her €115 million lotto win.

The curtains were drawn on the home of Limerick woman Dolores McNamara yesterday after she hit the jackpot in Friday night’s EuroMillions draw.

Despite the wild weekend celebrations, the 50-year-old mother-of-six will not be able to get her hands on the tax-free millions until early next week.

National Lottery bosses yesterday said they cannot confirm the identity of the winner until the person comes into its offices with the winning ticket.

“Obviously it is all over the papers but there is a formal procedure,” Lottery spokesperson Paula McEvoy said.

“The offices will be open on Tuesday but it would be mid to late next week at the earliest, that the person would get the money, because of the magnitude of the amount.

“The funds would have to come from abroad. It is up to the winner, however.

“They may choose not to come in for two months. They have 90 days from the day of the draw.”

Ms McNamara has apparently left her white terraced bungalow on St Patrick’s Road in Garryowen.

Neighbours said the housewife was staying in a nearby hotel to escape the intense media interest.

Regulars at the local Track Bar, where Dolores celebrated her jackpot on Friday night, claimed she had flown out of the country early on Saturday morning.

Dolores and her family were sitting at a table at the Track Bar’s modern inner section on Friday night when they saw the EuroMillions numbers flash up on the screen.

The numbers drawn were 03, 19, 26, 49 and 50 and the Lucky Stars were 4 and 5. She couldn’t believe they were her numbers and rang a neighbour to get her to check them on Teletext.

Barman Tom Purcell said when the numbers were confirmed, the winning ticket was shown to everybody and a big party started with bottles of champagne.

“It was great craic. It was all family. All her family are regulars here,” he said.

Barman James McNamara, who is not a relation, said it couldn’t have happened to a nicer person.

Ms McNamara showed the ticket to delighted customers in the bar and then went to a local police station to leave it for safe-keeping.

However, gardaí refused to take responsibility for it and a local bank manager was roused out of bed to put the precious ticket in a bank vault.

Ms McNamara and her husband Adrian, who had a triple heart bypass operation recently, have three daughters - Dawn, 28, Kim, 22 and Kevan, 20 - and three sons - Gary, 26, Dean, 15, and Lee, 13.

Punters in Britain, Ireland, Portugal, Switzerland, France, Spain, Austria, Belgium and Luxembourg participate in Europe’s weekly draw each Friday.

The EuroMillions jackpot had not been won since the middle of May and had rolled over nine times.

Another Irish punter was also one of nine players across Europe to win €677,248 in the Match Five plus one star category.

Meanwhile, there was one winner of Saturday night’s Lotto jackpot, worth €1,350,000.

The winning ticket was sold in Anthony Carey’s Newsagents in Lucan, Co Dublin.

More in this section

Price info
IE_180_logo
Price info

Subscribe to unlock unlimited digital access.
Cancel anytime.

Terms and conditions apply

Puzzles logo
IE-logo

Puzzles hub

Visit our brain gym where you will find simple and cryptic crosswords, sudoku puzzles and much more. Updated at midnight every day. PS ... We would love to hear your feedback on the section right HERE.

Puzzles logo
IE-logo

Puzzles hub

Visit our brain gym where you will find simple and cryptic crosswords, sudoku puzzles and much more. Updated at midnight every day. PS ... We would love to hear your feedback on the section right HERE.