Woman wins £1million with Premium Bonds purchased two decades ago – how to win the jackpot

Martin Lewis advises against children's savings in Premium Bonds

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Premium Bonds are a savings account made available by NS&I which allows Britons a place to deposit and withdraw their money at will. The interest paid through the account is decided by a monthly prize draw, which has a winning jackpot of £1million and is accessible to all bond holders. Each investment must be worth £25 and can either be bought online, over the phone or by post.

As of today, the annual Premium Bonds prize fund rate stands at one percent, which is variable and can change over time.

For September 2021, two lucky individuals took home the £1million jackpot, with one coming from Shropshire and the other from Bristol.

The first bond number drawn, the Shropshire winner, had £30,000 in Premium Bonds and bought the winning Bond just under 15 years ago in October 2006.

This makes him the third Premium Bonds millionaire since the prize draw’s creation back in 1957.

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In comparison, the unnamed Bristol winner held £30,000 in Premium Bonds, and purchased the winning Bond in October 2003.

This makes her the eleventh winner from the city and one of few to win with decades old bonds.

Only seven other Premium Bonds winners have held their winning bond for a longer period of time than the woman from Bristol before winning the jackpot prize.

Ian Ackerley, the NS&I’s Chief Executive, believes the Bristol winner’s success helps address certain misconceptions about the way Premium Bonds work and how Britons can claim the top prize.


Following the September prize announcement, he said: “We are absolutely delighted for our winners from Shropshire and Bristol.

“The length of time since the winning Bonds were purchased debunks a common myth that only the newest Premium Bonds win prizes.”

Mr Ackerley added: “It goes to show that all Premium Bonds holders are in with a chance at winning the top prize, even if their Bonds were not purchased recently.

“The length of time that our two winners held their Bonds will make their wins all the more special and shows the lasting appeal of Premium Bonds.”

With the October prize draw not that far away, many Britons will be wanting to find out how they can improve their odds and take home the £1million jackpot.

How to improve your odds

Currently, the odds of winning are set at 34,500 to one for every £1 bond, which is less than favourable odds for many savers.

NS&I pays out around three million prizes every month to bond holders. Winners’ numbers are generated by a random-number generator, which is named ERNIE.

All prizes issued by NS&I are tax-free, which can make the product even more of a draw for savers.

Due to the random nature of the process, every Bond regardless of its length has a “separate and equal chance” of securing a prize, according to the savings bank.

However, there is a way of improving your odds as a bond holder who is looking to get that £1million jackpot in the bank.

Due to the nature of purchasing bonds and the current odds, the NS&I advises that the more Bonds you hold, the better your chances of winning”.

As the Premium Bonds prize draw is essentially a lottery-based system, it is important for savers to keep this in mind.

How are Premium Bonds paid

Any Premium Bonds prizes are paid straight into the winner’s bank account or NS&I Direct Saver account

This is so the process is quick, easy and safe. Winners are notified about the good news by email or text message.

Normally, they will receive their prize money in your bank account by the seventh working day of the month.

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