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Lotto scheme deserves lotta support

More than 60 good causes are now registered for an online lottery which has been launched by Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council.

And at least 16 more are in the process of signing up for the initiative which aims to raise funds for local organisations. They include sports clubs based in the borough, a domestic violence refuge, community one-stop shop, the New Vic Theatre and a whole host of others.

Council officials are delighted with the response and are now looking for the public to get behind the scheme and buy tickets. They cost £1 with 60p going towards local organisations compared to just 28p in the pound for the National Lottery.

The draw takes place on Saturday every week.

Supporters of the community-focused lottery can win a jackpot prize of £25,000 for a matching sequence of six numbers and other prizes include £2,000, £250, £25 or three free tickets.

In addition to the cash prizes there are a number of other prizes to be won. Winners will be drawn at random and could walk away with an Apple iPad, a Smart TV and tickets to a variety of local attractions such as Alton Towers.

Cllr. Elizabeth Shenton, Leader of the Borough Council, said:  “This is a simple way for people to support a lot of worthy causes in our borough who do great work in our community.

“It would be great if the public can get behind this initiative and raise money for these groups and organisations. Our budgets at the Borough Council are facing enormous pressures and we are not able to step in, as we have done previously, and give the financial support these local good causes need and deserve.

“The lottery is a way in which we can put a system in place which does make those vital financial contributions and for that reason I am urging people to support it and buy tickets.”

There are two parts to the Lyme Lottery scheme. Local charities will be able to set up their own lottery page and will receive 50p in every pound spent by players using this method. A further 10p in every pound will go into a general good causes’ fund, with the remainder being put towards prizes, operating costs and VAT.

Players who do not wish to support a specific cause can still take part in the Lyme Lottery, with 60p of their ticket price going into the general good causes fund, which will be distributed by the Council.

Fiona Wallace, New Vic Theatre Managing Director, said: “As a charity, the New Vic is looking forward to being one of the local good causes taking part in the Lyme Lottery. We already know that the National Lottery has made an enormous contribution to good causes across the country. 

“Having our own local lottery for Newcastle-under-Lyme can bring that type of support closer to home. Alongside more than 130,000 people who visit the New Vic annually, we work with over 15,000 people each year through our Borderlines and Education teams and support through the Lyme Lottery would make a valuable contribution to this.”

Another good cause which has registered is the Alice Charity.

Its Chief Executive Officer Stephanie Talbot said: “We welcome the introduction of the Lyme Lottery. The hardest challenges facing us, and all small local charities, is developing a sustainable revenue stream and raising our profile locally.

“The Lyme Lottery supports both these objectives in one go. Joining the scheme couldn’t be easier and many of our team have already signed up to play. We are recommending it to many of our supporters and hope other people join in and buy tickets.”

To buy tickets or register as a good cause visit www.lymelottery.co.uk .