So what do we know about UK National Lottery Machines?
UK National Lottery Machines
Over ten years old now, the UK National Lottery first became public in 1994, when the company Camelot was granted a license by the British government. It has had mixed fortunes over the years, with rival companies vying for the right to host the lottery, not least Richard Branson, who narrowly lost out in 2001 despite wanting to use the monies raised for purely charitable reasons. He, Richard Branson would call the new lottery company People's Lottery.
It has also gone through various format changes, as well as being called Lotto, in order to try and revive flagging ticket sales. However, at the forefront of all this, despite some negative publicity, the UK National Lottery remains hugely popular, with the chance to become an instant millionaire a persuasive argument for many.
Although there is now a Daily Play lottery, where smaller prizes can be won each day of the week, the main draws for the UK National Lottery are made on Saturdays and Wednesdays. The Saturday draw is still the main one, with the larger jackpot coming at the weekend. The Wednesday draw may have a smaller jackpot, yet still sees a lot of people trying their luck for the lucky numbers. Both days also have a Thunderball draw, where there is a slightly higher chance of winning but the prizes are a lot smaller.
The jackpots can vary in value, since they are determined by the amount of tickets sold. However, on average, you can usually expect the Saturday jackpot to be around 6-7 million GBP, with the Wednesday prize usually sitting at around 3 million GBP. If there is a rollover (where the jackpot hasn't been won), then the numbers increase significantly. However, due to decreasing ticket sales, the jackpots are nowhere near the early days of the lottery, where prizes were often over 10 million GBP. The Thunderball offers a guaranteed top prize of 250,000 GBP.
Method Of Drawing The Numbers
The way that the numbers are drawn is very similar to an old bingo hall. There are 49 coloured balls, each with its own number ranging from 1-49, and these go into a revolving dome, with a solitary number drawn five times. The last ball drawn is in a separate dome, and this is known as the Bonus Ball, which can be the difference between winning a couple of hundred thousand, and several million pounds.
Some Historical Information on UK National Lottery Machines
The actual domes that are used to draw the numbers have their roots in medieval British history. With the company that controls the lottery being called Camelot, perhaps this is no surprise. Named after the historical King Arthur's dwelling place, the domes are also named from that period – therefore you see the likes of Merlin (Arthur's magician), Galahad (one of Arthur's trusted knights) and Lancelot (another knight). It's something that is unique to the UK National Lottery, amongst the rest of the lotteries worldwide.