Punching Above Your Weight winner earns £1m on scratchcard

Written by on 14th September 2018

The champion of a “Punching Above Your Weight” competition is a winner again after earning a £1m jackpot on a Lottery scratchcard.

Darren Donaghey, 33, rarely buys a Lottery ticket but bought the £5 scratchcard on a whim on Tuesday when he was in a local shop to get milk.

He and his wife Kate, 28, plan to spend the cash on a larger house for their two children who have autism.

The couple hit the headlines in 2014 when they won a honeymoon as part of a Metro Radio competition in which listeners voted for couples who were most mis-matched in looks.

The Donagheys have a girl aged three and a boy of six, both of whom are “non-verbal”, they said.

Darren and Kate say the win will transform their lives
Image: Darren and Kate say the win will transform their lives

The scratchcard win means the family will be able to leave their two-bedroom house in the Walker area of Newcastle and move to a bigger property where each of their children will have a room of their own.

They will also have a sensory room in their new home with bubble lamps to provide a quiet area.

At first Kate did not believe Daren when he came bursting into the house saying he had won £1m.

Once the win was confirmed and they realised what a difference it will make they could not help crying for joy.

Mr Donaghey, who works as a call centre supervisor, is considering giving up his job so he can spend more time with his family and help stay-at-home-mother Kate with the children.

Darren Donaghey bought the scratchcard by chance while shopping
Image: Darren bought the scratchcard by chance while shopping

They also plan to use some of the cash to support autism charities that have helped them.

Mr Donaghey said: “We are currently in a two-bedroom house and desperately need more room for the children – now all of our dreams have come true with this win.

“We can move to a new home, which is bigger and with more bedrooms and even create a sensory room for our daughter and son.


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