Granada Introducing 'The Lottery Winners' from Leigh championing the underdog

The lead singer of The Lottery Winners had always dreamt of being a rock star and is starting to live that dream.

The past 15 years for the band from Leigh have been a rollercoaster ride but their numbers came up with their latest album, Anxiety Replacement Therapy which recently topped the album charts.

They had told fans they had written a number one album and it was an anxious wait to see if it would make it, beating Nines, Jessie Ware and National to the top spot.

Thom Rylance said it has not been easy. He has ADHD and said he struggled to fit in at school and still finds it "hard to deal with criticism and rejection".

Their achievement is all the sweeter after the band parted ways with their label, Warner Brothers just two years before.

They dedicated the album to the co-founder of Sire Records Seymour Stein who had supported them.

Boy George and Thom Rylance after they filmed 'Let me down' together Credit: The Lottery Winners

After collaborations with Boy George on 'Let Me Down' and Happy Mondays's Shaun Ryder on 'Money' they will join Rick Astley on his stadium tour in February 2024.

The North West stars had both played Glastonbury this year, along with recent Granada Introducing bands, The Lathums and The Mysterines.

Katie Lloyd, on vocals and guitar said: "Glastonbury was amazing. We did six sets, the most that a band did that year or perhaps ever."

Thom added: "The north west scene is lovely and we are friends. The Lathums are lovely, The Mysterines are too, we all support each other."

All friends from school days in Leigh, Thom met Rob Lally on guitar when he showed him around his new school.

Thom said he was "written off by teachers, except in Music and English" after he was expelled from his second school.

Katie and Joe Singleton, who plays drums, used to sit next to each other in class.

She said: "We are all very close as a band, we get to share all the highs and lows together especially when we were skint, borrowing kit to play live.

"That's why we called ourselves The Lottery Winners, it was an ironic name, which we now regret."

Thom admitted: ''It's a terrible name, in retrospect we really don't like the band name".

Packing out their own headline gigs they accept they can't ditch it now. But they have been overwhelmed by the support for their record.

'Alternative Replacement Therapy' or ART has been described as a self care album, with some fans suggesting it should be on "prescription."

The Lottery Winners described their latest album as their 'greatest achievement'. Credit: ITV Granada

Katie said that was the band's greatest achievement and they "love it when people tell them how it has helped them. "

Playing this year's Kendal Calling, they have a summer of festivals lined up and a sell out gig at Manchester's O2 Apollo.

Fans described their 'high energy on stage and the band's hilarious comedy stand up' at their recent gig in Liverpool.

The quartet from Leigh on their chart topping album cover Credit: The Lottery Winners

But they would like to have their own big arena tour, hoping to play Manchester's AO Arena next and Leigh's Sports Village, in their hometown.

"This is the culmination of 15 years together. It's only going to get bigger and better from here", said Thom with a huge smile.

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