The same shop sold the first £1m lotto winning ticket in the south east
THERE’S a buzz of excitement around Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, with the news that Wednesday night’s lotto jackpot of €5.6m was won in the town.
The winning ticket was sold in the Day Today store in Slaney Place on the day of the draw. While the identity of the lucky punter is being officially kept anonymous it’s believed he is a well known local man who has played the same set of numbers for around the last 20 years.
The shop where the ticket was sold is owned and operated by two friends from Thurles, Frank Jordan and Kieran Joyce, who are now both married and living locally in the Enniscorthy area.
Speaking to the Enniscorthy Guardian, Kieran said they found out on Thursday that they had sold the ticket.
"I got a call from the lotto to say we had sold the winner on Wednesday night and that was it, we were shocked but delighted too,” said Kieran.
“They’re his own numbers that he uses, it wasn’t a quick pick, they were his own numbers,” he added.
It’s not the first time lady luck has shone on Kieran and Frank, however, who also operate another similar shop in the Bull Ring in Wexford town.
“We’ve been quite lucky because in the last while we’ve sold a few lucky tickets and the nights of the big €19m lottery win we sold a ‘five and the bonus number’ ticket that night,” said Kieran.
"Last November we had a €116,000 winner in the euromillion draw in Wexford town so it’s great in fairness,” he added.
“We took over here in 2019, from Jim Byrne, and unfortunately Covid kicked in straight away and we had plans to build the deli here and things but we’ve started to go great here now and we’ve a good man in here now, John Morrissey in the deli, who used to have the River Restaurant, he’s here now with us and the deli is starting to go flying and we’re starting to bring in new customers.”
Kieran and Frank were joined for the celebration event in the shop on Friday by their respective wives, Aine and Catriona, and by their children, Elle and Fionn.
The two business partners have also been life long friends since little infants in primary school and their move to Wexford followed on from when Frank met Aine in London, and then he began working in a shop in Wexford before taking it over.
Kieran then moved down and bought into the business and expanded to Enniscorthy.
“We’re friends since we five in primary school and we met in baby infants,” said Kieran.
“People think we’re brothers and we’ve been through the trenches together for the last couple of years but this is great today now to have this to celebrate,” he added.
His sentiments were echoed by Frank who said they couldn’t be more thrilled for the winner. “People won’t believe this story but on the very day of the draw, our local National Lottery Rep visited the store and I jokingly told him to send a winning ticket my way! Low and behold, only a couple of hours later, one of our customers has had a truly life-changing win and honestly, we couldn’t be anymore thrilled for them,” he said.
The two store owners are also very appreciative of the dedication of their staff and customers who helped them face the challenges of the last two years.
“The shop has a very loyal base of local customers who have supported us since 2013,” said Frank.
“Being honest, the pandemic really hit our business hard, and it was tough at times to keep going,” he added.
“All that hard work and perseverance from everybody in the shop has really paid off today and this win is a nice reward for the winner and the community for all their support for the store throughout the years.”
However, the store is well known for being a lucky shop. Frank and Kieran are leasing the building from the stores previous operator, Jim Byrne, and when he ran the shop it sold the first £1m lotto winning ticket in the south east.
Commenting to the Enniscorthy Guardian, Jim said this latest lotto win was great for Enniscorthy and he pointed out that the lucky nature of the shop stretched back to even before when he bought it in 1977.
Prior to that it was run by Bob O’Leary and such was the good fortune associated with it that it was referred to as ‘lucky Bob’s’.
“We sold the first million winner in the south east and that was around the late 1980s,” he added. “We sold several others too for lesser amounts. I think we had four lottery winners altogether in our time. That first million win was for £1,000,20,000.”
Jim went on to comment: “They would have been for around €500,000 and that kind of amount, they wouldn’t have anything like this amount and it’s been a while since there was a winner here that I know of so it’s good to see it.”
The link to ‘lucky Bob’s’ is still evident on the shop front with the O’Leary name still in place above the door.
“We kept the name lucky Bob’s,” said Jim. “We were one of the first shops to take the lotto but Bob used to do the sweepstakes”.
"I bought it in 1977 and we ran it up to a couple of years ago and Frank and Kieran took it over and they’re leasing it now and have a good business going there,” said Jim.
"This is really great for them and I’m delighted for them.”
Fran Whearty, from the national lottery, said the amount won by the Enniscorthy winner was life-changing. He also congratulated Kieran and Frank for being the lucky sellers and said it’s great for their business.
“I believe Bob’s place before them was known as a lucky shop so it’s brilliant for them to be carrying on that tradition of good fortune,” said Fran. He also confirmed that the winning ticket holder has made contact with National Lottery headquarters.
“We’ve had contact from the winner and we asked him to sign the back of the ticket and to take a couple of weeks out before they actually do anything or before they come up to us to collect the money,” he said.
"It’s really important to get legal and financial advice because there are a lot of implications that come with a win like this in terms of the financial planning that they will have over the next couple of years,” he added.
“Especially, looking after family and all that type of stuff. The win is completely tax free but there are tax implications if you are gifting money to friends and family because you really need to have your research done.”
Fran also said there are other implications that the winner will need to consider because of the size of the win.
“This is going to change your life and the lottery will have a team there who will be working with the winner to help them maintain their privacy and giving tips and hints along the way with how to deal with the win over the next few weeks and months.” said Fran.
“At the end of the day it’s a nice problem to have and it’s really exciting because this amount of money is completely life-changing,” he added.