When Beechwood pensioner Marie Aitken answered the phone last Friday afternoon, she assumed it was "just another telemarketer". Much to her surprise, she was receiving the good news that she'd won a $10,000 Hastings Co-op charge account.
"I'm a firm believer in supporting local businesses and religiously entered the Co-op competition over the last couple of months," she said.
"We've been Co-op shareholders for more than 60 years, and rarely shop out of town, but I never imagined I'd win. I've never won anything like this.
"My husband Ed and I shop at all the Co-op businesses, but we love doing our weekly shop at Timbertown SUPA IGA."
Mrs Aitken's windfall was first prize in Hastings Co-op's annual customer giveaway. Ten lucky customers also won a $500 gift voucher.
Those winners included: Tom Cooper, Tracey Wilson, Paul Glessing, Narelle Downey, Paul Smith, Rod Cant, Debbie Lawrence, Kylie Fuller, Leia Kippax and Phillip North.
Hastings Co-op's chief executive officer Allan Gordon congratulated all the winners and thanked valued members and customers for supporting the Co-op and entering the competition.
"Our annual giveaway is always popular, and it's great to see the big prize going to such a deserving winner," he said.
"The $10,000 Giveaway is our way of giving back to loyal customers, who are at the heart of everyting we do," he said.