When Colin and Chris Weir won their £161 million EuroMillions jackpot a year ago, it was clear they saw the vast amount of money as a responsibility as well as an extraordinary piece of luck.
Inevitably such a massive sum raises questions about whether a greater number of smaller prizes would not result in greater benefit both to individuals and society.
Twelve months on, the Ayrshire couple who won Europe's largest-ever lottery prize have proved themselves far from the splurging stereotype and may well be Europe's most grounded lottery winners. Although they said their three-bedroomed house in Largs would remain their home for ever, they have succumbed to the temptation of buying a bigger one. However, the mansion they have moved into is just outside their home town and they gave their old home to a young neighbour who had just had a baby.
That simple gesture sums up their approach to spending their fortune over the past 12 months. Their most high-profile donation was £1m to the SNP. Because it followed an invitation to tea and biscuits at Bute House with the First Minister, it sparked a political row over the use of Government resources for party interest. Alex Salmond was exonerated but the Weirs' subsequent donations have been on a notably smaller scale in their local area to meet specific needs. Largs Thistle Community Club has a new all-weather football pitch, facilities at the National Sports Training Centre at Inverclyde have been renewed, the paddle steamer Waverley has been kept afloat and refurbishments made to a local care home.
The Weirs have a close, personal interest in all these projects and are likely to gain particular satisfaction from sponsoring young people. The couple are contributing to training costs for a tennis player, an artist and a racing driver.
In setting up a trust, however, the Weirs have recognised that while responding to individual requests is fulfilling, they will be able to do more through an organised structure. Mrs Weir has identified a particular need in the current recession to support individuals, groups and charities in Scotland struggling to gain funds from mainstream grant makers.
Perhaps because both have suffered from illness, they seem especially conscious of their good fortune and are intent, as many lottery winners are, on sharing their good luck.
To approach it in such a serious and wholehearted way, marks them out as the best of role models for the increasing number of people pinning their hopes on a lottery win.
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