Ever since then, it's not been possible to buy a National Lottery ticket here in the UK until the launch of the current UK National Lottery on Monday 14th November 1994. Why ? Well, a lot of people blame the soccer pools companies for putting pressure to preserve their status as the only way of winning more than a million pounds in this country.
The National Lottery of the UK is one of the most popular and well-known tax free, lump sum lotteries in the world.
It is administered by the Camelot Group plc; who were awarded the license to run the UK National Lotto in May 1994 and have been doing a great job ever since the very first draw on 19th November 1994.
The Camelot Group itself began as a consortium of 4 separate shareholders, all established companies in themselves. This makes the British national lottery quite unique among the euro lottery and global lottery world as it is run by private companies and is not state-run.
The Lottery Commission regulates all UK national lotto operations and looks after the interests of lottery players and the UK's interests in the lottery.
In 2002, as a measure to fight a reduction in sales figures, this lottery was rebranded as Lotto and has enjoyed an even stronger market position since.
Over the years, more and more games have been added to the UK lottery portfolio and together, these games are still collectively known as the National (UK) Lottery, with the main draw being the UK Lotto.
These other games in Camelot's portfolio include Lotto Hotpicks, Thunderball, Dream Number, Daily Play, Euromillions & scratchcards.
The UK Lotto is the main jackpot style game offered by the UK National Lottery - it is a traditional 6/49 game that is so popular, it is played by the majority of the British population. The UK Lotto is the game that creates more millionaires in Britain than any other.
The jackpot for the UK Lotto usually starts at around £4.5 million and rolls over each time the jackpot is not won. This is then added onto the following draw's jackpot and increases in size each draw until somebody wins it when it will revert to the starting jackpot sum of approx. £4.5 million.
The National Lotto began as a once per week draw on Saturdays but as popularity grew and more people play UK Lottery it began a Wednesday draw on 5th February 1997. The UK Lotto produces jackpots that can reach huge figures and has reached £42 million in the past.
The UK National Lottery uses what's known as a 6/49 matrix - which means that when you play UK Lottery, you need to select 6 numbers from a pool of numbers from 1 to 49 - if you match all 6 numbers drawn then you will be a jackpot winner.
As well as the 6 main numbers, a 7th number is drawn. This is the bonus number and is drawn after the 6 main numbers.
In addition to the jackpot itself, there are 4 other ways in which you can win when you play UK Lottery - with prizes to be won if you match either 5 main numbers plus the bonus number, 5 main numbers, 4 main numbers or even just 3 main numbers.
A Lucky Dip facility is available when playing the UK Lotto - very much similar to the Quick Pick facility that is used in many USA & Canadian lotteries - which means that you can ask the lottery retailer or computer to randomly select all your National Lottery numbers for you.
So, when you play UK Lottery it is easy just select your own 6 numbers or request them to be randomly generated for you by using the Lucky Dip option or you can ....
Choose Your Lotto, Thunderball or Euromillions Numbers with
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UK Lotto-Thunderball-Euromillions Lucky Dip
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The cost of play UK Lottery was just £1 per 6 number selection but doubled to £2 from 3 October 2013, with prizes restructured.
The "New Lotto" prize fund is 42.47 percent of draw sales in a normal week; plus 5.03 percent fund for the raffle. This is 47.50 percent of draw sales in total. The three-ball prize winners, with odds of 56 to 1, receive £25 each; the remaining prize fund is then divided as shown in the table and split equally with the number of winners for each selection:
Division of funds left after paying 3-ball winners
5 numbers and bonus ball
% of fund
Odds of winning
1,031 to 1
55,490 to 1
2,330,635 to 1
13,983,815 to 1
The overall odds of winning any prize are 54 to 1.
Prize odds are 1:54. Draws take place on BBC TV Saturday 19:30 and Wednesday 22:35 Times may vary.
The last draw was on 8 July 2006 and it was replaced by Dream Number.
Dream Number was launched on 15 July 2006.
The National Lottery closed the Dream Number game on Wednesday 9 February 2011.
Lotto Plus 5 was introduced in 2011
The last Plus 5 draw was played on 1 October 2013.
The Daily Play draw started on Monday 22nd September 2003.
The National Lottery Daily Play Draw ended on Friday, 6 May 2011
Lotto HotPicks gives you the chance to win bigger prizes for picking and matching fewer Lotto numbers.
Decide how many numbers you want to pick and select the corresponding 'Pick' game. Enter the
appropriate amount of numbers for the game you've chosen, from 1 to 49.
Lotto Hot Picks is £1 per entry.
Following the changes to the Lotto game, Camelot introduced Lotto raffle which is a ticket bought automatically with a Lotto ticket. Each raffle number consists of a colour and 8 numbers (e.g. AQUA 4579 2965). Each winning raffle number wins a fixed amount of £20,000. For each draw the list of winning numbers is published online, along with a map of where the winners are by region. The number of winners varies during rollovers:
Every Wednesday and Saturday each UK Lotto entry is given a unique Lotto Raffle number. There are a minimum of 50 prizes of £20,000 to be won on top of the regular UK Lottery prizes.
Camelot also state they may decide at any time to hold a promotional Lotto raffle Draw in which Lotto raffle Prizes of more or less than £20,000 may be available to be won.
These Prizes will be in addition to the 50 guaranteed Lotto raffle Prizes that can be won in that Lotto raffle Draw.
If the UK Lotto jackpot is not won, the number of Lotto Raffle prizes are rolled over up to a maximum of 250.
So for every UK Lotto entry that you buy, there will also be between 50 to 250 prizes of £20,000 to be won on the UK Lotto Raffle.
The Lotto jackpot rolls over and gets bigger each time it's not won. The maximum number of Rollovers is four, a Quadruple Rollover. In the Quadruple Rollover Draw, if nobody matches all
six main numbers drawn, then this huge prize rolls down to the next prize level, five main numbers plus the bonus ball, then five main numbers, etc, until there is a winner or winners.
There have been some changes to the Thunderball game:
Thunderball offers you the best chance of winning up to £500,000 on a £1 National Lottery game - the top prize is fixed and it never has to be shared**. Simply select 5 main numbers from 1 to 39 and 1 Thunderball from 1 to 14.
The Thunderball draw takes place every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, and 5 main numbers are drawn, along with 1 Thunderball. Match just the Thunderball to win the minimum prize. Match 5 numbers plus the Thunderball to win the top prize of £500,000.
Playing Thunderball is really easy, you can now choose five main numbers from 1-39 and still one Thunderball from 1-14 - or pick a Lucky Dip for a randomly generated line of numbers. As an extra draw has been introduced on Fridays, you have the choice to play up to three times a week; Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays.
Five main numbers are drawn, along with 1 Thunderball. Win prizes simply by matching the Thunderball only, or by matching one or more main numbers plus the Thunderball. If you match 5 numbers plus the Thunderball you win the top prize of £500,000.
From October 5th 2013 the Millionaire Raffle game was added to all UK Euromillions entries. This means that an extra £1 Million could also be won twice a week.
The Millionaire Raffle draw works in very much the same way as the existing EuroMillions Raffle does with the UK EuroMillions and the France Euro Millions.
When playing in the UK EuroMillions now costs £2 per line of numbers and includes the Millionaire Raffle, which creates a new UK millionaire every week, guaranteed!
That's right; one UK EuroMillions player is guaranteed to win £1 million every week!
The way you play EuroMillions has not changed; every time you purchase a line of EuroMillions numbers, you'll be issued with a unique Millionaire Raffle selection - which will be displayed on your ticket. This selection will be entered into the weekly Millionaire Raffle draw.
EuroMillions is Europe's biggest-ever, rolling jackpot lottery game. Simply select 5 numbers from 1 to 50 and 2 Lucky Stars from 1 to 9.
The EuroMillions draw normally takes place every Friday evening in Paris, and 5 main numbers are drawn along with 2 Lucky Stars. Match a minimum of three numbers to win a prize; 3 main numbers, 1 main number and 2 Lucky Stars or 2 main numbers and 1 Lucky Star.
Match 5 main numbers and 2 Lucky Stars to win the jackpot, or a share of it!
It is generally accepted that you need to be a resident UK citizen to play UK Euromillions online.
Once you have entered to play UK Lottery draw, you can then easily check the UK Lotto results online to see how you have done and to find out if you have become one of the lucky Lotto winners.
With a slightly lower age limit than most countries, you only need to be 16 years of age (in the UK) to be eligible to purchase a ticket for any of the UK National Lottery games including the UK Lotto.
You can check the National Lottery results in many ways, either in local or national newspapers, at the retailers, online or on television.
The draws are shown live on television on Saturdays at 7.30pm GMT on BBC1 and on Wednesdays from
10.35pm also on BBC1. Times may vary.
The odds of winning on the UK Lotto are competitive when compared to some of the other world multi-million jackpot lotteries such as the USA Mega Millions and Powerball games.
The chances of winning a UK Lotto jackpot and matching all 6 main numbers are 1 in 13.98 million. For these odds you could be one of the jackpot winners.
For one of the prizes on the second level and matching 5 main numbers plus the bonus number, the odds come in at 1 in 2.33 million.
The likelihood of winning a third tier prize by matching 5 main numbers comes in at 1 in 456 and for a prize on the fourth tier the odds are reduce right down to just 1 in 55,492.
To win a prize on the fourth tier and match 4 of the main numbers, you are looking at odds of 1 in 1.033 with fifth tier odds and matching just 3 main numbers being 1 in 57.
The overall odds of you winning any prize in a National Lotto UK draw are a very reasonable 1 in 54.
These are the odds for a jackpot game that produces millionaires week in week out and thousands of cash winners every single week.
You can, of course try and increase your chances of winning lottery games such as the UK Lotto and EuroMillions. How? .
The 2 primary methods that are the best to employ when trying to increase your chances of winning lottery games are
All UK National Lottery jackpots are paid in the form of tax free cash lump sums. If you win when you play UK lottery, you need to claim your lottery win within 180 days of the draw taking place before your entry becomes invalid and the money you would have won is given to relevant good causes.
If you play lottery online however, whatever your win, this will not be a concern for you, as your accredited lottery ticket sales agency will take care of all this for you, whether it is TheLotter or whichever company you may use.
Since it began, the UK Lottery has raised over £22 billion towards various good causes.
Some of the main areas to benefit from lottery funding are - health, education, environmental causes and charities. Lottery proceeds also go towards sports, the arts and heritage causes.
In the case of the Dream Number game by the UK National Lottery, funds raised go towards the fund set up for the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games due to be held in 2012.
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