Self-employed builder Steve Thomson and his wife Lenka celebrated their $A201 million win in late November. Picture: Andrew Matthews/PA via AP
Self-employed builder Steve Thomson and his wife Lenka celebrated their $A201 million win in late November. Picture: Andrew Matthews/PA via AP

$201m lotto winning tradie’s shock move

When self-employed builder Steve Thomson won a staggering $A201 million lottery jackpot last month, most people assumed his life would change forever.

But just weeks after hitting the big time, the dedicated tradie has shocked the public by getting back to work for one surprising reason.

Mr Thomson and his Slovakian-born wife Lenka, who live in Selsey in England's south, won £105 million ($A201 million) after buying a ticket for a EuroMillions draw in late November.

The parents of three became the winners of the ninth-largest jackpot ever recorded in the UK.

But after taking a bit of time off to process the win, Mr Thomson, 42, is going back to work after promising his clients he would finish their projects before Christmas.

Speaking to The Mirror, he said he was determined to "finish jobs" clients had booked before the win.

"I am going back but not until next week at least. Everything is just really overwhelming at the moment," he said.

The Sun has also recently published photos of Mr Thomson hauling boxes, driving his old van and helping his business partner Neil Peet instead of relaxing and splashing his cash.

When Mr Thomson first claimed his prize, he vowed not to let his win get in the way of his work commitments.

"I've still got jobs to do before Christmas … I will hold my word to it that they will get finished. I'm not hanging up my tool belt, definitely not," he said at the time.

"Once I'm over the shock I'll need to keep doing something, I'm not the type to just sit still.

"My business partner knows if he needs a hand I'll be there."

Steve Thomson, pictured with his wife Lenka, is already back at work just weeks after his whopping win. Picture: Andrew Matthews/PA via AP
Steve Thomson, pictured with his wife Lenka, is already back at work just weeks after his whopping win. Picture: Andrew Matthews/PA via AP

Several Selsey locals told The Sun Mr Thomson had remained humble after the win, with one saying "You'd never know he's one of the richest men in Britain" while another added: "Steve's a mega-jackpot winner but first and foremost a loyal builder".

Speaking to EuroMillions staff soon after their win, Mr Thomson said he was stunned when he first realised he had the lucky numbers.

"I started shaking a lot. I knew it was a really big win but didn't know what to do," he said.

"I went out to my van, walked back in, thought about knocking on a neighbour's door, went back to the van - I think I was on the verge of having a heart attack."

Mr Thomson decided to visit his wife at work to break the news.

"As soon as he walked in I thought something was wrong and he said he had to talk to me immediately," she said, revealing she originally thought they had won just £105,000 ($A201,646) before she realised it was far more.

The couple said their children had only made "modest" requests so far, with one child asking for an iPhone and another hoping for a Tesla when he's older.

Mr Thomson said they were going to be "sensibly generous" with the cash and that they would remain in their small village.

They plan on helping relatives buy property, buying a bigger house for themselves and visiting Ms Thomson's family in Slovakia more often.

After hitting the jackpot, Ms Thomson, who works at a newsagent, said she was most excited by the prospect of taking more holidays with her family.

Australia's biggest-ever lottery winner was a Sydney mum who claimed a $107,575,649.08 Powerball prize in January this year.

At the time, the healthcare worker made headlines for her staggering win - but also for her promise to stick with her healthcare job.


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