Jobless Strabane woman scoops €32m Euro Millions win

Margaret Loughrey reported to be ‘still slightly in shock’ after biggest lottery win in the North

Margaret Loughrey who is reported as saying  she will continue to live in Strabane. Photograph: PA

Margaret Loughrey who is reported as saying she will continue to live in Strabane. Photograph: PA

Mon, Dec 2, 2013, 13:25

The 48-year-old unemployed Strabane woman who scooped some €32 million in last week’s Euro Millions lottery has given a short interview to her local newspaper – and opted for cover.

Margaret Loughrey picked the five winning numbers and two bonus balls when she bought her ticket at the local SuperValu store in the Co Tyrone town.

The purchase made her the biggest lottery winner in Northern Ireland, easily beating the €24 million won in 2004.

The windfall means life has changed dramatically for Ms Loughrey who has been without work for some time and lives in a modest two-bedroom bungalow in the Border town.

But she is reported as insisting she will continue to live in Strabane which used to have the unenviable tag as the town with the highest rate of joblessness anywhere in Britain or Northern Ireland.

The multi-millionaire has declined most requests for interviews but she has spoken to the Strabane Chronicle, her local newspaper.

Reporter Conor Sharkey said Ms Loughrey is “still slightly in shock, but quite matter-of-fact that the money has come her way”.

He told UTV she was adjusting “from having a modest two-bedroom bungalow to (being) one of the wealthiest women in Ireland” and adding that this was “a lot to take in”.

“There’s no solid plan but she’s been talking about a holiday,” he added.

Local SuperValue store manager Colm Gallagher said: “I don’t know what Margaret’s going to do with the money but I wish her all the best with it. I’m sure she can do plenty of good things with it.”

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