Ron, 70, beats the odds to win St Francis Hospice lottery twice in four months - with same number

PUBLISHED: 13:31 27 August 2013 | UPDATED: 13:31 27 August 2013

Ron Johnson with his second £1,000 cheque

Ron Johnson with his second £1,000 cheque


Ron Johnson has a lucky number – but he doesn’t know what it is.

Retired lift engineer Ron, 70, has taken first prize in the St Francis Hospice lottery twice in just over four months.

It’s the first time it’s happened in the draw’s 22-month history.

With 6,500 played each week, the odds of the same number being chosen twice in such a short space of time are lower than one in two million.

But until his first success back in April, Ron – who signed up around the start of the year – admitted he’d forgotten all about the lottery.

“I don’t play it to win,” said Ron. “I play it because they need the money.

“I’d never won anything in my life – but then, lo and behold, I got a phone call to say I had.”

And lightning seemed to have struck twice when the Havering-atte-Bower hospice got in touch a second time earlier this month with the same message.

“I was gobsmacked,” said Ron.

“I didn’t choose the number – they just assign them at random.

“I don’t even know what it is.”

He plans to use the cash to escape the weather once the evenings draw in – with a trip to the Canary Islands.

The hospice’s marketing manager Esther Preston said: “With a choice of ways to pay to suit all players, a weekly entry of just £1 and a guaranteed £1,000 winner every week there’s never been a better time to play our lottery.”

St Francis cares for people with life-limiting illnesses including cancer and heart disease.

The lottery was set up in October 2011 with the aim of bagging £1million for the hospice’s work.

You can sign up at or call 01708 771433 to buy tickets.

Alternatively, visit a hospice shop to buy a lottery gift voucher as a present or a single ticket, valid for one draw. It costs £1 to enter a number each week, with results drawn randomly by a computer every Friday.

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