Secrets of a millionaire

Photo Ian Robinson'Lottery winner, Debbie Mather, from Chorley
Photo Ian Robinson'Lottery winner, Debbie Mather, from Chorley

A Chorley lottery millionaire who predicted her own fortune has stepped forward to lend other winners a helping hand.

Deborah Mather scooped more than £5.1m after her winning numbers came up on Friday 13 seven years ago.

She made national headlines at the time after predicting she would land the £5,159,514 jackpot when she read her tarot cards a fortnight before and pulled out the ‘Wheel of Fortune’ card.

But superstition means nothing to Deborah who has now won the lottery on Friday 13 twice, after winning £10 two weeks ago.

Deborah has spoken ahead of a National Lottery draw which will make 100 guaranteed UK millionaires on Friday.

Recalling her win, the 54-year-old said: “My son Peter was due to go to Malaga to find work and the weekend before we had a party for his 21st birthday on Friday the 13th. I bought three lucky dips that day and everyone was saying how unlucky it was.

“The following day we were all watching TV at my friend’s house. I was going through my numbers one by one and every single number matched.

“I felt this rush from my feet and all the way up. It meant Peter didn’t have to go anymore.

“There were tears running down my face and my friend said I was bouncing. I still get choked up thinking about it.

“Camelot told me to keep the ticket somewhere safe so I slept with it in my bra all night.

Deborah now owns the Firework and Fancy Dress Shop on Bolton Road with son Peter, now 28, and both still live in Chorley after moving from their home in Clayton-le-Woods shortly after the win.

But it hasn’t all been plain sailing for Deborah, who underwent several operations after injuring herself in a fall down the stairs before her win.

And she says the win has made her more careful about finding love.

She said: “I haven’t changed. My life has, but I haven’t.

“I have been on my own since I won the lottery and I think one of the biggest problems you can have is finding a partner.

“You don’t tell someone when you first meet them because you need to know they are genuine.

“But on the other hand as a lottery winner you become more aware of the things you can do for other people. And you can take the time to do it.

“It’s definitely the second best thing that has ever happened to me. The best thing was Peter.”

Deborah, who gave away almost £1.5m of her win to charity, says her top five tips to any millionaire would be to make sure you go public with your win, take advice from anyone who can give it, don’t rush into making any decisions, and go on a good holiday.

She said: “I would recommend anyone go public. It can be a very lonely experience and if you do that you have other people who know how you feel.

“We are part of an exclusive club now, and it’s one of the nicest clubs I’ve ever been in.”