The first Premium Bonds draw was back in June 1957, and while the savings scene has no doubt changed over the years, there are still a huge amount of people who hold Premium Bonds. In the March 2020 prize draw, NS&I said there were 86,147,886,134 eligible Bonds for the draw.
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There was a total of 3,516,240 prizes this month, with these worth a total payout of £100,505,875.
Currently, the odds of winning a prize per £1 Bond number is 24,500 to one.
Last month, NS&I announced it was cutting interest rates, meaning from May 1, 2020, the prize fund rate will change to 1.3 percent – and the odds of any single Bond winning a prize will thus change to 26,000 to one.
Amid the winners this month were two people who have been selected for a £1million payout each.
These people are from Norwich and Cambridgeshire, NS&I revealed – while maintaining their anonymity.
As well as announcing the winners, today, NS&I has taken the opportunity to urge people to check to see whether they’re owed a prize.
The savings bank said there are more than 1.7 million prizes worth in excess of £65million that are still waiting to be claimed by Premium Bond holders.
It may be that they have gone unclaimed due to a change in address, or the holder has forgotten about the Premium Bonds.
NS&I urges people to keep them up to date with any changes to addresses or contact details.
Premium Bonds bought for children can also often be forgotten, it warned, adding that people should therefore check with NS&I to ensure that they haven’t missed out on any prizes.
NS&I also revealed some ares of the UK where there are a significant number of unclaimed prizes.
This includes Cambridgeshire – which has 15,042 unclaimed prizes worth a total of £510,125.
Here, there are six prizes worth £1,000 which were won between September 1986 and September 2014.
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The oldest unclaimed prize in the county is £25 and this was won back in October 1966 with a total holding of just £1.
Meanwhile, in Norwich, there are 8,117 unclaimed prizes worth a total of £284,500.
The largest unclaimed prize is £1,000 in this city. NS&I revealed that seven unsuspecting Premium Bond holders have won this amount between October 1996 and March 2017.
The oldest unclaimed prize in Norwich is worth £25. The winner has the Bond number CW056200, and it was won in December 1971 as part of a holding worth £3.
Premium Bonds checker: How to check
There are a number of ways to check for Premium Bonds prizes, and this includes using the NS&I Premium Bonds prize checker online.
It’s also possible to do this via the Prize Checker app, which is available on iOS and Android.
People with an Amazon Alexa-enabled devices can also check their Bonds via the skill.
Another option is for Premium Bonds holders to choose to be notified by email, and now text message.
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