Britian’s £101m lottery winner 'walked out on her son when he was 12'
THE son of £101m lottery winner Angela Dawes has accused her of walking out on him when he was 12 years old.
Mrs Dawes and her fiancé Dave yesterday celebrated winning Britain’s third biggest lottery jackpot, pledging to make millionaires out of 20 close friends and family.
But amid the popping of champagne corks, Steven Leeman, now 17, said he was not expecting charity from the 43-year-old, claiming she abandoned him as a young boy after beginning an affair with Mr Dawes.
He told The Sun: “As far as I’m concerned, I don’t have a mum.”
The boy’s father, John Leeman, said he and his son were left with £20,000 of debts after she ejected them from the family’s flat in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire.
He told the Daily Mail: “She’s talking about making 20 of her friends millionaires, but what about her son?”
Mr Leeman, a lorry driver from Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, added that they split after he came home one night to find his clothes thrown outside their flat in bags.
Steven, who was 12 at the time, said he returned from a school trip to France shortly afterwards and found his father gone.
He said: “She packed my bags and told me if I didn’t like it I should go.”
Mrs Dawes, who has changed her name to that of her fiancé, issued a statement last night saying she was “saddened” by her ex-husband’s claims.
She said: “A lot of what has been said since my divorce has been untrue and very hurtful.
“I’ve always wanted to be in contact with my son, who I love dearly, and very much still want to rebuild our relationship.”
Mr Dawes, 47, a factory supervisor, and Mrs Dawes, a charity volunteer, were named yesterday as the winners of last Friday's £101m National Lottery jackpot.
The couple, who live in a £70-a-week rented one bedroom flat, now plan to go on a spending spree, buying their dream wedding as well as houses in Chelsea, west London, and Portugal.
But along with treats for themselves, they have decided to share their luck with up to 20 close friends and family, giving each a million pounds.
"It's an excessive amount of money, but we intend to look after our family and friends and do the best we can," said Mrs Dawes.
"We have drawn up a list of 15 to 20 people that we are going to make millionaires," added Mr Dawes who has been married twice before and has two sons.
"Anyone who has helped us through our life. We intend to make them millionaires, it is not just going to be us."
Before their big giveaway, the win makes the couple a million pounds better off than David Bowie, the 703rd richest person in the country.
They move ahead of celebrity couples such as Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne (£95m), and Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin (£48m).
Their win is the third biggest-ever EuroMillions prize behind Colin and Chris Weir, from Largs, Scotland, who won £161m earlier this year and an anonymous winner in October 2010 of £113m.
Their winning ticket was only the third they have ever bought and they said that they did not plan on buying anymore, saying it would be "crude" to win again.
"I am the kind of person who buys a raffle ticket and throws it away because I never win. Thank god I never threw this ticket away."
The couple said they watched the prize draw live on Friday and could not believe it as all their numbers came up.
They said it had still not properly sunk in.
"We were watching TV and the EuroMillions draw show came on so we kept watching, not thinking we would win anything.
"We got our tickets out and watched in shock as, one by one, the numbers came up on the line I'd chosen.
"We couldn't believe it! It was too late to call Camelot so I kept the ticket on me all night until the morning but we didn't sleep a wink."
He said he kept the ticket in his jeans back pocket until he had a chance to get to the Camelot office.
"I have never ever won anything in my life. I checked the ticket 50 times during the night. By the time it was drawn the lines were closed so we had to wait until the morning," said Angela.
The couple already share a surname after Mrs Dawes changed her name by deed poll so they appeared married when they could not actually afford to have a wedding.
However they were finally planning to get married abroad next year so the windfall means they can now enjoy the wedding of their dreams – and a new engagement ring for Mrs Dawes.
They are planning to buy properties in London and abroad, and are looking forward to a trip to Las Vegas and a skiing holiday in Switzerland in the coming months.
But the windfall will also give them a chance to help friends and family close to them.
Mr Dawes, who announced his "retirement" at the press conference in Hertfordshire, is an avid Chelsea fan, having been a steward at the club in the past, so a season ticket is also on the shopping list.
He is also planning to buy a house nearby the ground.
He said: "I'm not worried about getting a box – I want to stand with the real fans and watch my team play.
"I'd also love to live near the ground and have Frank Lampard come over for a cup of tea."
Mrs Dawes, who works for the British Heart Foundation, said: "My mum and dad live in Portugal so we are going to buy a house over there."
She said that was also where they planned to get married.
The winning EuroMillions numbers on Friday 7 were 18, 26, 34, 38, 42 and the Lucky Star numbers were 5 and 8.