The first draw takes place on Saturday 29 July with 60p from every £1 ticket going to local charities and good causes. Players can choose which cause they want to support. It's free for good causes to register for the Somerset West Lottery and more are encouraged to sign up.
The lottery is a joint initiative by Taunton Deane Borough and West Somerset Councils and an example of the two authorities working together in partnership.
Katrina Midgley, Chief Officer of Engage, the first good cause to sign up, said: “We were keen to support the lottery not only for the benefits it can bring to us as a charity and our work but also for the benefit it will bring to the areas of Taunton Deane and West Somerset. We will be actively encouraging all the charities and community groups that Engage supports to sign-up as good causes.”
Clare Pound of Home-Start West Somerset, said: "For small charities, getting this money is going to make a lot of difference, and will go a long way. We'd encourage other local good causes to sign up."
Players have a 50 to one chance of winning one of the prizes, which range from the £25,000 jackpot to three extra tickets.
Cllr Jane Warmington, the Borough Council’s Executive councillor for community leadership, said: "The Somerset West Lottery is a great way to support charity and voluntary organisations, while the council manages its reduced budgets.
"We believe this option, with an external company taking responsibility for the prize fund costs, mitigates any risk to the council.
Cllr Dave Westcott, Leader Member for Community and Customer at West Somerset Counci, said: "We will be encouraging local causes to register as a beneficiary of the lottery. The society lottery concept is an idea other local authorities are exploring and has been successfully launched by several councils already."
A lottery management company, Gatherwell, has been appointed to run the scheme, having already launched similar lotteries with Portsmouth, Corby, Peterborough and many others.
Ben Speare, Gatherwell's managing director, said: "We are delighted that Gatherwell has been awarded the opportunity to run the new Somerset West Lottery.
"We're looking forward to helping support Taunton Deane and West Somerset local causes in partnership with the council."
To buy your tickets or register as a good cause visit www.somersetwestlottery.co.uk
Note: Attached is a photo from the launch:
West Somerset shows members of Watchet Bowling Club, Ali Reeson from Home Start West Somerset, S Blackburn from Brushford Parish Hall and Cllr Dave Westcott.
Released jointly on behalf of Taunton Deane Borough Council and West Somerset Council
Contact:Debbie Rundle Media & Communications officer 10823 356407 or 01984 635280