Online lotto celebration

lotto artwork

The UK’s first council to launch an online community lottery is celebrating two years of success, with more than £120,000 raised for local good causes. And it’s not just success for Aylesbury Vale – the initiative has now been adopted by more than 30 councils across the country, from Torbay to Harrogate, and is well on track to generating a total of more than £1 million a year, with ticket sales increasing all the time.

Aylesbury Vale District Council (AVDC) started the ball rolling with Vale Lottery back in 2015 in response to central government cuts and has seen scores of causes, including almost 40 schools, joining up to raise much-needed funds.

Cllr Janet Blake, Cabinet Member for Business Transformation and Commercialisation, said: “We’re so proud to have started Vale Lottery. It’s an amazing joint effort which sees the council, residents and good causes working together to improve the community. The result has been phenomenal.“

Organisations sign up at where players can also buy their tickets for £1 a week and choose their cause. A total of 60p from every ticket goes directly to local good causes – that’s more than double the amount donated per pound by the National Lottery, which gives 28p. Players have the chance to win a £25,000 jackpot every week.

Pop star and local resident, Tony Hadley, has supported the initiative since it started in November 2015. He said: “It’s fantastic to see the difference Vale Lottery is making to so many good causes on my doorstep. It’s also really encouraging to see other councils doing the same thing. Thanks to all the lovely people who support it.”

Horse riding lessons for autistic children, computers for schools, young carers support groups, a children’s library and community sports equipment are just some of the projects on which Vale Lottery funds have been spent.  It’s not just the good causes that win – to date Vale Lottery players have won more than £11,000.

More than 160 causes are signed up to Vale Lottery, with some raising thousands of pounds a year. Frankie Hockham, who works with Medical Detection Dogs, an organisation which works to detect and better manage diseases including cancer and diabetes, said: “Medical Detection Dogs has raised almost £5,000 from the Vale Lottery so far, and we have the potential to raise much more. The lottery gives our supporters the opportunity to donate whilst having the chance of winning £25,000 – something that we would not be able to offer otherwise. Money received from the lottery enables us to train more dogs to save and change lives.”

AVDC runs Vale Lottery with local company Gatherwell, which operates as their external lottery manager.

Company director Ben Speare said: “AVDC came to us with this great idea, we worked on the project together and just two years later it’s raised more than £120,000 for their local causes. We’re working with them to roll the model out to other councils and now more than 30 have their own lotteries. It’s great to see councils thinking so innovatively.”

Vale Lottery is celebrating its second birthday on Wednesday 29th November at the Gateway in Aylesbury with many of the charities, as well as special guest and high profile supporter Tony Hadley.

November 23, 2017