Idris Elba’s movie career, The Eden Project and giant horse sculptures The Kelpies are among 25 things that may not exist were it not for the National Lottery.

The movie Bend it Like Beckham and gold medal-winning Olympians Victoria Pendleton and Sir Chris Hoy are other national treasures to benefit from lottery grants.

The list has been brought together in a new piece of modern art by world-renowned artist David Mach.

He was commissioned to create a mural to celebrate the start of eight weeks of celebrations for The National Lottery’s 25th birthday.

The artwork features a mix of famous and lesser-known national treasures brought together in one image to represent The National Lottery's impact on life in the UK over the last 25 years - across sports, film, heritage, the arts, and community projects.

It includes the Morecambe Brass Band, one of the first projects to ever receive National Lottery funding; and Idris Elba, who made his directorial debut in 2018 with Yardie, thanks to help from the organisation.

David Mach said: “For the past 25 years, there is barely a part of our cultural, sporting and community life that has not been positively influenced by National Lottery funding.

“As someone who is involved in charities and institutions, and has artwork commissioned from National Lottery funding, I know the impact it has had on the UK.

“I wanted to help people to get a sense of this impact with this artwork through 25 stories and to have it shown on a local high street for anyone to view is fitting.”

Other beneficiaries of lottery funding over the last quarter-century include Tracey Emin, Rio Ferdinand, Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson, Betty Webb and a World War Two codebreaker from Bletchley Park.

The artwork, titled ‘United By Numbers: The National Lottery at 25’ was unveiled on October 16.

It was exhibited for the day in the window of Booth & Howarth on Mauldeth Road, Manchester, a shop that has been selling National Lottery tickets for 25 years.

It’s also available to view online at

2012 Olympic gold medallist Victoria Pendleton, who features in the artwork, added: “The National Lottery helps thousands of athletes across the country reach for their dreams and inspire the nation.

“It helped fund those amazing experiences in 2012 that we all remember and cherish; and I doubt I would have been able to win Olympic gold without it.

“It is an honour to be chosen by David for this amazing artwork to represent the impact playing The National Lottery has had on the Olympics.

“I hope everyone enjoys the upcoming celebrations to mark the 25th birthday of what has become such an important institution.”

See for details of individuals and organisations helped in areas of the UK.