AT the time she was the face of the National Lottery but when she came to Blackburn in 2003, Mystic Meg had other lucky numbers on her mind.

For the celebrity stargazer was in town to launch a new lottery to raise funds for the East Lancashire Hospice.

And the launch marked a return to East Lancashire for the star - real name Margaret Anne Lake as she once lived in a terraced house in Russia Street, Accrington.

The aim of the lottery was to raise £120,000 a year to go towards running costs with a weekly jackpot of £1,000 being offered.

For the Blackburn with Darwen launch, Mystic Meg, the Mayor and Mayoress of Blackburn and the Hospice Chairman Geoffrey Braithwaite, were collected from Thwaites HQ in Penny Street by a carriage pulled by the brewery’s famous dray horses and then proceeded through the town centre on the way to the official launch.

Mystic Meg said her East Lancashire roots were one of the reasons she was delighted to help the hospice.

She said: “I was born in Accrington and lived there until I was two and then we moved away to Oldham. I’ve never been back to the house on Russia Street but I love the name. My great grandmother was Russian and she used to live in Haslingden.

“I’ve got two predictions about the lottery. Firstly, I predict it will be a tremendous success, not just because it’s fun and all the money goes to a good cause, but because it starts on April 4, which is the luckiest day of the year because that’s when Jupiter starts moving again.

“Even just being in the draw on that day will bring good fortune. Secondly, the first winner will be an Aries, a fireman called Alan, who supports Blackburn Rovers.

“As for Blackburn, I predict they will reach the final of the FA Cup but I’m not going to spoil it for people by saying whether they win or not.”