Postman Pat wins Lotto ‘She started crying. She said, I can’t believe it, I’m so happy for you.’

As heard on The Ryan Tubridy Show

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If you play National Lottery games, what’s your numbers strategy? Do you let the computer randomly choose your numbers? Do you use your kids’ birthdays? Pat Broderick had a system: he has four children, so he used their ages, together with his wife’s and his own to give him his six numbers. Using ages meant that his numbers changed every year, which some might see as risky. Pat stopped using his system in 2011, but not because he’d lost faith in it, but because he didn’t need it anymore. And why would he? The numbers had served their purpose: they had made Pat and his family €7m richer.

“I was actually told beforehand that I’d won the Lotto.”

Pat Broderick was a postman – no doubt he’s heard all the Postman Pat gags – and one day in 2011, he started getting calls telling him that the jackpot which had been won in Kinsale. And the fact that Pat lived in Kinsale was in itself an advantage, because, as Ryan Tubridy tells us, Kinsale is Ireland’s luckiest Lotto town. Friends and relatives knew Pat’s numbers were the ages of his family, and when Pat started to get phone calls, he was pretty relaxed about it. It wasn’t until the Sunday evening while the dinner was cooking that he checked his ticket. He phoned the people who’d called him to tell him he might have won it and told them to keep it to themselves. Why?

Friends and relatives knew Pat’s numbers were the ages of his family, and when Pat started to get phone calls, he was pretty relaxed about it. It wasn’t until the Sunday evening while the dinner was cooking that he checked his ticket. He phoned the people who’d called him to tell him he might have won it and told them to keep it to themselves. Why? Because he told them: “I’ll meet you down in the pub in about five minutes.”

“So I did. I went down. Look, the dinner wasn’t eaten.”

Pat went to work the following morning and his mother’s house is on his route. He told her that he had something to say to her. “Sit down, I said.” There were rumours going around regarding who had won, but Pat’s name hadn’t been mentioned. So he calmly told his mother that it wasn’t this person or that person who’d won, it was him.

“She started crying. She said, I can’t believe it, I’m so happy for you.”

Pat’s daughter Christina was working in London at the time when she heard the news.

“I had one or two random texts during that day that I didn’t think much of.”

Eventually that evening Christina was on a train to meet her twin sister Annie when her mother called her and told her the news. Christina was delighted – and why wouldn’t she be? – particularly as she’d be the one to break the good news to her sister.

The expanded Broderick family made their way to the National Lottery headquarters in Dublin in a mini-bus to pick up the cheque. And Ryan, while acknowledging it’s a vulgar topic, insisted that everyone wanted to know what they did with the money. The answer:

“Nothing spectacular, really.” 

Pat didn’t buy a new house for himself and his wife (but he did buy houses for his daughters) and he didn’t buy a new car, either. (He did leave his position as a postman, though.) So why didn’t he splash out on a new home, a new car, all the things we imagine we’d buy if it was our numbers that came up?

“You can only wear one pants at a time.”

Can’t argue with that!

You can hear the full discussion with Pat and listen back to the rest of The Ryan Tubridy Show here.

© The Listener 2017

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