Welsh Mountain Zoo staff win £1m on EuroMillions
A syndicate of 16 zoo workers has gone wild after a £1m win on the EuroMillions millionaire raffle.
The syndicate at the Welsh Mountain Zoo in Colwyn Bay in Conwy county will receive £62,500 each.
Animal collection manager Peter Litherland said he hoped to go to Australia to see animals in the wild that he usually saw in the zoo.
Others in the syndicate, made up of zoo keepers, office staff and gardeners, plan to buy new homes and cars.
The group only realised they had won last Friday's raffle when the syndicate leader went to buy the following week's tickets online.
End Quote Peter Litherland Animal collection manager
Some of the syndicate members even ran around to my house in their slippers they were so excited”
Mr Litherland, 50, said they were all still "absolutely stunned".
"We cannot believe that something like this could happen to us," he said.
"I just hadn't even bothered to check the ticket as we never believed we would win. It was only when I went to buy our next tickets online that I realised we had won.
"I turned my laptop to my girlfriend who was sat next to me because I just could not believe it.
"I kept saying 'is this right, is this right?'. As the news started to sink in I called around the other syndicate members.
"No-one would believe me. We all live close to each other and the next thing I knew everyone was knocking on my door. Some of the syndicate members even ran around to my house in their slippers they were so excited."'Few tears'
He said he then called Camelot when they were all together. When the win was confirmed over the phone, he said: "I put the phone on loud speaker and we all just cheered and hugged each other".
"I have to say there were a few tears too. I think it is fair to say none of us slept that night," he added.
Mr Litherland said the syndicate was still deciding how to spend their winnings but new houses, cars and dream holidays were all on the shopping list.
"I would love to go to Australia as I have never seen the wildlife there," he said.
"It would be amazing to see animals in the wild which are only in the zoo in this country."
The "zoo folk" syndicate buys tickets for the EuroMillions draws twice a month and always plays with "lucky dip" numbers.
They say they will continue to play following their win.