United Kingdom

NS&I confirms Premium Bond millionaires still had visits from Agent Million

Each month, Agent Million personally visits the two winners of the million pound Premium Bond jackpot deliver the good news. 

However, this month, all but essential journeys and social distancing have been key during coronavirus and National Savings and Investment confirmed to This is Money it had to utilise a top secret plan.  

The strategy was implemented so Agent Million nor the lucky winner was at risk from Covid-19.

Jackpot win: Two lucky bond holders scooped £1m, but will likely be celebrating at home alone thanks to social distancing (picture posed by model)

Two holders of Britain's best-loved savings product who win £1milllion each month are usually visited by an NS&I Agent Million bearing a seven-figure cheque on the afternoon or evening before the first working day of the month.

It means April's Premium Bond millionaires, a man from Herfordshire who held £40,000 worth of Bonds and a woman from Essex who held the maximum £50,000, would usually have been given the good news yesterday.

But this month's draw is the first since the UK went into lockdown, raising the question as to whether Agent Million would still visit.

Delivery drivers have been leaving parcels outside people's front doors and Royal Mail are no longer requiring people to sign for parcels in a bid to prevent the spread of the virus.

But NS&I said Agent Million was still able to deliver the good news in person to the two jackpot winners, even if they didn't end up actually knocking on people's doors. 

But it told This is Money it couldn't provide details on its backup plans 'for the security of our Agents Million and customers'.

It added: 'We had already planned ahead for scenarios like this and Agent Million was well-equipped to still deliver the good news.'

This is Money tracked down the fourth Agent Million to take the role in 2012, a middle-aged woman who had been doing the job for 11 years. 

She said as well as turning up on winner's doorsteps after usually taking a train or a plane, she also advises them on what steps they can take once they've won the money and helps track down unclaimed prizes.

Premium Bonds Winners

Prize Area Value of bond
£1,000,000 Hertfordshire £40,000
£1,000,000 Essex £5,000
£100,000 Somerset £6,000
£100,000 Cambridgeshire £5,000
£100,000 Central Scotland £10,000
£100,000 Lancashire £32,000
£100,000 Essex £5,000
£100,000 Humberside £5,000

More April 2020 winners

View list of April 2020 winners

She said in the interview eight years ago: 'An awful lot of people think I'm pulling their leg and don't believe me. I take documentation with me to convince people they have won £1million and to prove who I am. 

'A lot of people don't believe me until the next day, when it has sunk and I have spoken to them again on the telephone. Many say they couldn't sleep.'

As well as the two millionaires, 3,527,794 prizes worth £100.8million were handed out in April, though the rest did not receive a personal visit. 

Six Bondholders won prizes of £100,000 and 12 £50,000. A further 25 won £25,000, and 61 £10,000.

Each Bond has a roughly 24,500 to 1 chance of winning prize of £25 or more, although this will fall to 26,000 to 1 from next month following NS&I making cuts to Premium Bonds.

Bonds have an average prize fund rate of 1.4 per cent which is comparable to interest earned on savings accounts, which will fall to 1.3 per cent from next month.

You can check to see if you have won using This is Money's Premium Bond prize checker.

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