LUCKY Sue Hope is looking forward to a life of luxury after a £3.20 play on an internet game won her a £720,000 fortune.
The finance director from Gosforth, Newcastle, is jetting off on holiday after winning Britain’s biggest-ever jackpot for a female gambler.
But she wouldn’t even have placed the bet if it wasn’t for her friends cancelling a night out at a Newcastle bar.
Sue, 42, said: “I’ve not stopped smiling since I got stood up, as if I’d gone out for a drink I’d have been in the taxi on the way home when I hit the jackpot.
“A large glass of wine would have cost me £4.90, but that £3.20 was money well spent.” On the night of her win, Sue had been due for a night out in As You Like It in Jesmond, but her friends couldn’t make it.
Stuck at home, she logged on to William Hill’s online betting site and played £3.20 on the Fairest Of Them All slot game.
“I was initially fed up about not going out and on the way home I bought a pint of milk and a scratchcard and won a tenner,” said Sue.
“I watched some telly but I started thinking perhaps all this is telling me to have a go on the slots machine. I decided to spend the equivalent of a couple of glasses of wine.
“The cash reel started spinning and it went from tens of pounds, to hundreds of pounds, to thousands of pounds and I started shaking.
“I was clutching the computer. It settled on £720,167.30. I switched the computer off and back on and it was still there with a congratulations message.
“I was shaking when I rang my mum and told her – she just swore at me as it was late at night and she thought I was mad.”
Sue is jetting off on a round-the-world holiday, and when she returns she’ll move out of her two-bed rented flat and buy her own home.
But she said she will also help out her family as well as the company she works for, Eastern Seals in Ashington, Northumberland.
“It’s a life-changing sum, but it’s not just going to change my life,” she said. “It will help change the lives of all the members of my family and will help secure 18 jobs. I also plan to buy a place in the Bahamas and my dad Neil can go and fulfil his dream of retiring there.
“My mum Kathy and stepdad Bob live with my disabled sister Catherine and they will be taken care of as well.
“And my big brother Neil and his wife Bryony are hard-working immigration officers and I want them and their two children to benefit from my good fortune.”
Sue’s win beats the record set by Agnes Haddock, 54, who won £688,620 on the ToteScoop6 TV bet in February 2007.
William Hill spokesman Rupert Adam said: “We are delighted to have made Sue the most successful female punter of all time. It’s a fantastic win and a record for a woman in the British gambling industry – it’s a staggering sum from a £3.20 spin.”