A woman in Worcester claims she bought the unclaimed £33million Lotto ticket everyone is searching for – but put it in the washing machine. You can see the winning numbers, but the date and barcode have been scrubbed off by water damage, she claims, as it was still in a pair of jeans when they went in the laundry. The unnamed woman rushed into the Ambleside News with her tattered ticket yesterday, according to the Times. She told the paper: ‘I’ve been a nervous wreck. I haven’t slept all night. ‘Since I found it in my jeans pocket, my daughter and I have been drying it out with a hairdryer. You can see the 2016 but not the date.’ Read more >>
In the cartoon by Mac from the Daily Mail, a representative from Camelot (the company that runs the UK lottery) has just delivered a cheque to the house of the woman who claimed to have the winning ticket. Her daughter calls up the stairs to tell her that the £33 million cheque has arrived but that "they're sorry it's blank but it's been in the wash" - just like her 'winning' ticket!
The cartoon should be easy enough to understand. A blank cheque is one with nothing written on it. This one is blank because it's been 'in the wash', i.e., in the washing machine.
This cartoon and story would be a good introduction to the classic questions "What would you do if you won the lottery?" and "Does money always bring happiness?", as well as the whole subject of betting and gambling in general. There are always loads of lottery stories in the news, so it's a good topic for reading activities as well. In the past, I've put students in groups of four and given each one a different article about a lottery winner. They then have to sum up the story in their own words to the others in the group and decide which was the most interesting/surprising/tragic/heartwarming story. The excellent PIE has a couple of good podcasts about the lottery too (Episodes 84 and 85).
• We put Lotto washing machine gran's jackpot claim to test (Daily Mirror)
• Gran 'who put £33m winning Lotto ticket in washing machine' faces agonising six month wait (Daily Express)
• Lotto farce: Hundreds claim £33m lottery ticket after woman 'puts it through the wash' (Daily Star)
• Grandmother who claims she put her £33m Lotto ticket through the wash has been called to court SEVEN times for not paying fines (MailOnline)
• Family First: Children would treat their families if they won the lottery (YouGov)
• £33m Lotto washing machine gran now claims: 'Not once have I said I have the winning ticket' (The Sun)
• Pictured: The battered Lotto ticket with no date that grandmother claims has won the £33million jackpot (MailOnline)
• Matt cartoon (The Telegraph)
The Daily Telegraph reports that the woman claiming to have the £33m winning ticket has been 'ruled out' from the prize.