Friday, 31 July 2009

Everything I didn't know about Premium Bonds

I've learnt something new today - I've learnt what Premium Bonds are.

Until now, the only thing I knew about Premium Bonds was that Jimmy Hill used to give them away as the prize for winning the Goal of the Month competition on Match of the Day. That was about 30 years and I've never taken the trouble to find out more.

However, last month as part of his birthday present, Jamie's Grandad Derek very kindly gave him money to buy some Premium Bonds and this morning I finally got round to sorting them out.

One of the many nuggets of information I've picked up today is that apparently more than one third of the UK population own Premium Bonds (yes, surprised me too).

Other headlines include:
  • Premium Bonds were introduced by Harold Macmillan in his 1956 Budget

  • A draw is made each month with a top prize of £1 million

  • There were two £1 million prizes each month before Gordon Brown took one away

  • The odds of winning a prize for each bond number held is 36,000 to 1

  • The machine that generates the random numbers for the draw is called ERNIE, which stands for Electronic Random Number Indicator Equipment (see what they did there?)

And I've saved the best till last - in the legendary sitcom Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em, Frank Spencer's mother used to send ERNIE a Christmas card each year in the hope that she would be favoured in the draw. I love that.

It takes 30 days before Jamie's numbers become active so it'll be September before he has his first chance to become a baby millionaire.

But given that he won the only raffle he's ever entered, surely it's only a matter of time.

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