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Scot couple who scooped £57.9M Euromillions win nearly missed out

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A LUCKY Scottish couple scooped £57.9million on the Euromillions - despite the winning ticket being ripped in two by their shopkeeper.

Fred, 67, and Lesley Higgins, 57, were the lucky ticket holders who won the entire jackpot and have gone public with news of their win today.

The retired couple, from Aberdeenshire, managed to predict the right numbers in the draw on July 10 to take home £57,975,367.

That makes them richer than pop star Harry Styles, actress Emma Watson and singer Ed Sheeran.

But they almost missed out on the jackpot after the shopkeeper mistakenly tore their ticket in two before realising it was a winner.

Mr Higgins said: "I handed the ticket over and the young man put it through the machine, telling me it wasn't a winner.

"He ripped the ticket in two and threw it into the bin, as they would with all non-winning tickets.

"But this time, the terminal produced a chitty which said I needed to retain my ticket and call Camelot. The retailer immediately grabbed it out of the bin and handed it to me, not realising it was a winner before he discarded it!"

Thankfully all the numbers were still clear so Fred called Camelot while Lesley was "snoozing" to confirm the win.

He said: "When Lesley woke, I explained we had a winning ticket and what had happened.

"I showed her the numbers, asked her to check and she misread them, thinking we were £5.7 million richer rather than an amazing £57 million!"

Retired Audi administrator Fred has already made one purchase - a brand new Audi Cabriolet.

And the couple, who have been married for 35 years, have always dreamed of living abroad.

Fred said: "We love Gozo, which is where my niece lives, so we always thought we would get somewhere out there.

"But I have to say since we won, I've got my eye on somewhere in France and Lesley seems to be looking at property in Barbados.

"I think it might be fun to explore a few places before we commit to buying anything."

Fred, who collects Malt Whisky and has around 40 unopened bottles, said he and Lesley are now planning to celebrate their wedding anniversary on August 20 before deciding what to do next.

A Camelot spokesman said a range of security checks had to take place because the ticket was ripped in two.

"We are so glad to be able to pay Fred and Lesley this amazing sum," he said.

"It is essential that we ensure we are paying the rightful ticket-holder, and in situations like this, it can take a little time for these investigations to be completed."

Scottish couple Colin and Chris Weir, from Largs in Ayrshire, banked one of the largest Euromillions win ever, with an incredible £161m in 2011.

Colin, a 64-year-old cameraman, and Chris, 55, a former psychiatric nurse said they planned to travel to China and Australia and buy homes for their son and daughter with their newfound wealth.

The largest Euromillion jackpot ever stands at 190m euros – with three winners achieving that sum over the years, including English couple Adrian and Gillian Bayford in 2012.

The shopkeeper and healthcare assistant splashed out on mansions and a luxurious lifestyle, but split just 15 months after their big win.

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