Fisherman from Trowbridge wins top lottery prize after forgetting to check ticket

John Stembridge, 51, plans to open a luxury fishery with the money. Credit: National Lottery

A Wiltshire fisherman who didn't check his lottery ticket for weeks has won a life-changing amount of money.

John Stembridge, a 51-year-old plasterer and keen angler from Trowbridge, has won the National Lottery's 'set for life' prize of £10,000 every month for 30 years.

After working as a plasterer for 20 years, John has said he's excited to use the money to invest in his hobbies - fishing and photography.

He plans to open a luxury fishery and build a lakeside home.

Speaking after the win, John said: “There will be no more days of coming home covered in plaster dust.

"Me and my family’s lives are now changed forever. It makes me so happy that I can now help and support my family and those closest to me.

"To be in the position where I get £10,000 every month, tax-free, is just phenomenal. This National Lottery win has changed everything for me and those closest to me and I still just cannot believe it!”

Recounting his win, John added: “I was sitting in my van having a coffee after finishing a day of plastering and just noticed the ticket behind the visor. I was close to a shop so thought I would pop in and get the ticket checked, just in case there was anything on it.

“The assistant then said to me I would need to call the number on the ticket as it was a winning ticket, but she couldn’t pay me. I just thought I had maybe won £100.

"I went back to my van and called The National Lottery. My heart was racing.

"It was quite surreal – a National Lottery advert came on the radio at that very moment, playing the telephone call of a winner...and literally, as this came on the radio my call was answered.

"The lady on the end of the phone said to me, ‘Are you sitting down?’ She then confirmed that I had won the top prize.

"I literally burst into tears and I cried my eyes out. I could not believe it! My life was about to change forever – and this really was happening to me!”