March’s Premium Bonds millionaires come from Nottinghamshire and Oxfordshire, as over £25 billion in prizes paid out since first ever prize draw

Over £25 billion in Premium Bonds prizes have now been paid out to winners since the first ever draw in 1957, as March’s £1 million jackpot winners are announced as coming from Nottinghamshire and Oxfordshire.

A record £330 million will be paid out in prizes in this month’s draw thanks to the increase in the prize fund rate to 3.30%, the highest rate in over 14 years, and the fifth increase to the prize fund rate that NS&I has made in less than a year.

The first Bond number drawn for the March 2023 prize draw was 417YB876187 and is held by a winner based in Nottinghamshire. The winner holds £50,000 in Premium Bonds and purchased their winning Bond in October 2020. This win makes them the twelfth millionaire chosen by ERNIE from Nottinghamshire.

The second winning Bond number drawn was 319WC638508 and belongs to a winner in Oxfordshire. The winner holds £30,284 in Premium Bonds and purchased their winning Bond in January 2018. They become just the second £1 million Premium Bonds jackpot winner to come from Oxfordshire.

Jill Waters, NS&I Retail Director, said : “Our warmest congratulations go to our two jackpot winners from Nottinghamshire and Oxfordshire, and to all our winners over the years. Since the first ever Premium Bonds draw in 1957, we’ve now paid out a staggering £25.1 billion in prizes – that’s an impressive milestone, and shows why Premium Bonds continue to be so popular with so many people.

“Could you be a jackpot winner next month? Make sure all your contact details are up to date, including your address – you never know, one of our Agents Million might be knocking on your door sometime soon to deliver the life-changing news.”

The first Premium Bonds prize draw took place on 1 June 1957 and was overseen by Ernest Marples, the Paymaster General. The first draw had 23,142 prizes, compared to 5,007,989 today, and the top prize was £1,000. As of this month, ERNIE (Electronic Random Number Indicator Equipment) has now paid out a total of £25.1 billion in prizes billion since that first draw in 1957.

Make this spring a time to save with Premium Bonds
Premium Bonds are one of the nation's most popular savings products. They are the perfect way to start a savings habit, with the minimum investment starting at £25.

Premium Bonds customers can add to their Premium Bonds holding quickly and securely, both for themselves or their child, via bank transfer or online. By topping up regularly each month, customers are giving themselves further chances to win in the monthly Premium Bonds prize draws. Customers can find out how to make a bank transfer, pay online or set up a standing order into their Premium Bonds here .

March 2023 prize draw breakdown
In the 2023 prize draw, a total of 5,007,989 prizes worth £330,527,200 will be paid out. There were 120,191,710,955 Bond numbers eligible for the draw. Since the first draw in June 1957, ERNIE has drawn 611 million prizes with a total value of £25.1 billion.

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Unclaimed prizes
Premium Bonds prize winners are notified when they win a prize, but sometimes people move or change their contact details without letting NS&I know – this can lead to unclaimed prizes if they have opted to receive their prize by cheque.

In Nottinghamshire, there are 19,188 unclaimed prizes worth £573,225. The largest unclaimed prize is worth £1,000. There are nine of these in total and they were won between the August 1985 and August 2020 prize draws. The oldest unclaimed prize in Nottinghamshire is from March 1965 and is worth £25.

In Oxfordshire, there are 20,417 unclaimed prizes with a total value of £607,125. The largest unclaimed prize is £10,000 and is from the July 2020 prize draw. The oldest unclaimed prize in Oxfordshire is from August 1965 and is worth £25.

The best way for customers to ensure that prizes do not go unclaimed is to have them automatically paid directly into their bank account or reinvested into more Premium Bonds. More than nine in ten prizes are now paid this way as it is quicker and more secure than waiting for a cheque. Customers can find out how to switch here.

Customers that think they may have an unclaimed Premium Bonds prize can easily check by using NS&I’s online prize checker or the prize checker app.

Checking prizes
Premium Bonds holders can check to see if they have won a prize in March’s prize draw, by using the prize checker, official prize checker app or their Alexa-enabled device from Thursday 2 March 2023. Customers will need their Premium Bonds holder’s number to use the website and their NS&I number or holder’s number to check via the prize checker app. At the same time, they can check for any unclaimed prizes owed to them.