News out today reports the UK is sitting on £125 million of unclaimed scratch cards prizes! Financial website THISISMONEY broke the depressing news on the 10th August this year.
The unclaimed amount totald three per cent of the entire prize funds available, according to data from the UK National Lottery operator Camelot. The figures cover the period from 2018/19, ending in March 2019. The percentage of unclaimed money is up 2% from the previous year.
The surprising stat from the figures released by Camelot is the number of scratch cards left unclaimed in London. The capital city is accountable for HALF the unclaimed cards! You guys really have too much money, if you can't be bothered collecting those winnings!
Although, London isn't the only part of the country which is forgetful when it comes to redeeming winning cards. East Lothian in Scotland is just one of six areas outside the capital where £1 million in jackpots is still waiting to be dished out by the National Lottery.
It goes without saying that many of the outstanding prizes are probably in the region of £2 – £10. Like most people, I throw my winning tickets in the car with the notion of collecting the money when filling up on petrol. Only to forget and rediscover the card six months later when hoovering out the glovebox! Unfortunately, by then the damn thing has expired! Yes, scratch cards can go out of date.
It's worth noting that Camelot only publicises prizes over £50,000 that aren't claimed. Don't expect them to run a Nationwide press campaign for your £2 win on Monopoly scratch! There is one positive for those who forget to claim a prize. The money will find a good home as Camelot donates unclaimed prizes to local charities and good causes. Next time you see a gold plated playground, just think, your winning scratch card might have funded that!
One lucky punter who didn't forget to claim his jackpot is Andrew Hancock. Andrew, 46 who lives in Nottinghamshire scooped £1 million quid on the Monopoly Millionaire card! What makes Andrews story more remarkable is the nature of his win. After completing a weekly run to the supermarket, Andrew realised he'd forgotten to buy his cat food for his moggy ‘Shortcake'. Dashing to his local petrol station for a tin of whiskers, Andrew picked up the scratch card as he left. Incredibly, it turned out to be a £1 million jackpot-winning card. Mr Hancock said Shortcake would now “absolutely” be getting an upgrade on his cat food.
That's a purrfect ending to the story!