If you’re wondering why the two record EuroMillions winners decided to go public, Dermot O’Leary – who has the insider knowledge – has the answer.
Joe, 49, a communications sales engineer, and Jess Thwaite, 44, the business manager of a hairdressing salon, were revealed as the lucky pair of Britons who won an eye-watering £184 million.
The pair picked up the mega sum of money after purchasing a Lucky Dip ticket, and have been catapulted straight up the UK rich list.
But Dermot, who met the pair when their win was revealed, said it ‘couldn’t have happened to two nicer people’ as he addressed why they decided to go public.
Chatting on Friday’s This Morning, Dermot said: ‘I met them yesterday, I do a little bit of work with Camelot who run the National Lottery, they asked me very late the night before if I’d go down and interview them and manage the press conference, they decided they wanted to go public.
‘They were lovely, charming, very down to earth and humble, very acutely aware they were winning the money at a time when a lot of people are going through the hardship.’
He went on to describe their ‘rationale’ behind the decision to reveal the news, which was the first question he’d wanted to ask them.
Dermot explained: ‘If you win an awful lot of money, a life-changing amount of money, but amount of money you essentially wouldn’t have to go public with, say £500,000. You could buy a house, pay off your mortgage, put it in investments and live comfortably.
‘If you win £184million, bear in mind, poor Joe, when he picked up his phone in the morning, he thought he’d won £184,000 and he was absolutely over the moon. Then he just went, “Hang on a minute, what?” He was sort of bewildered by the number.
‘If you win £184million, then if you want to include you’re asking everyone to keep a secret and it’s just impossible, if you want to change your life.’
The pair are said to have celebrated their gigantic win with a £16.95 steak and chips at a local restaurant with their family.
A family source told The Sun: ‘They were in such a celebratory mood they left a sizeable tip.’
The lucky pair, who’ve scooped the biggest-ever EuroMillions jackpot, revealed yesterday that they had headed out for dinner ‘so we could share with our family’.
Their very first purchase after their win was just as modest – new furniture for their bedroom.
Speaking on Thursday, Jess said: ’To tell the truth, we bought bedroom furniture. We bought a chest of drawers and a wardrobe. Other than that we haven’t done anything.’
Joe said yesterday that he didn’t wake his sleeping wife to tell her the news, and waited until their alarm went off to tell all.
‘I saw how much and I didn’t know what to do’, he said. ‘I couldn’t go back to sleep, I didn’t want to wake Jess up so I just laid there for what seemed like forever.
‘I spent some time searching for property with no budget limit, which was a novelty!’
This Morning airs weekdays from 10am on ITV.