A whopping £50,000! That is what Steven Bray, a 35-year-old Oldham resident is set to pocket after winning the national Bingo Game Jackpot at Mecca.
The night of Tuesday, 5th June will forever remain etched in his mind since it is the day fate granted him a wish every bingo player lives for- having the right number combination to win the jackpot! Bingo has been a traditional family pastime for Steven, having been introduced to the game by his late parents, seven years ago.
The win was not the first one for Steven, but none of his previous wins was as big as this life-changing jackpot. For the 35-year-old who works as a hire controller for Hire Station, this win opens many doors. He plans to take a holiday to the Maldives, a popular destination that he has always wanted to visit. Clearing his mortgage is also high up on his list of priorities.
When asked how the win will change his daily life, he said: “I work two jobs which keep me extremely busy, so I’m hoping to use the money to take a break from my hectic lifestyle.” He also hopes that some aspects of his life like the relationship he has with the people around him will remain the same. That is why he plans to hold a Thanksgiving party for family and friends.
Despite the absence of his parents, Steven believes his luck when choosing the numbers could be a gift from them. They were avid bingo players, and he would have enjoyed sharing the joy of winning with them. It was actually a bittersweet memory, having lost his dad only last September, to a heart attack – He was aged 69. His mother also died of a heart attack back in 2011 while she was 55 years old.
Asked why he loves bingo, Steven says it provides a sweet escape from daily hassles. “It’s always a good buzz when waiting for the last numbers to be called,” he adds. Playing bingo once or twice a week offers him a chance of meeting new people.
Tony Beverly, the Mecca Oldham club manager was also elated by Steven’s win because it adds to his club’s tally of jackpot winners in the new National Bingo game that started on 30th April. Steven’s win is the 11th. He said: “it is great to see one of our longest standing players win the National Bingo Game. He really couldn’t believe it when we told him there and then that he had won a £50,000 Jackpot.” The new National Bingo game offers various jackpot prizes including £100, £1000 and £50,000 on each game. House prices are also available at every club.
Apart from Steven, everyone at the club also had a reason to celebrate. The party held for members by the Mecca Bingo club on 21st June gave everyone a chance to enjoy a drink, and tuck some buffet as they watched Steven, his sister and some of his buddies receive the giant check on stage. Their optimism that probably some of Steven’s luck would rub off on them was quite apparent.