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New lottery making £50m for health

A new televised lottery has been launched with the aim of generating up to £50 million a year for health causes.

The Health Lottery - run by Northern & Shell, which owns Channel 5 and Express newspapers - offers a £100,000 top prize for matching five numbers from 50.

The launch was hosted by television presenter Eamonn Holmes, who will front the live draw to be shown on ITV1 and Channel 5 each Saturday from October 8.

He said: "It's such a great idea, I am really excited about being part of something that not only makes people smile every week, but also has the ability to change lives in the longer term."

Matching three numbers wins £50 and four numbers £500. No matter how many people win, everyone will get the advertised prize, the Health Lottery said.

Martin Hall, chief executive of the Health Lottery said: "The Health Lottery game is a fresh new alternative which has one single good cause at its heart - health.

"It is an exciting new launch which will benefit every community in Great Britain."

But the launch attracted criticism from Sir Stephen Bubb, of the Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations, who dubbed it a "disgraceful new development".

He wrote on his blog: "He (Northern & Shell owner Richard Desmond) intends to only give 20p in the pound to health, whereas the National Lottery is giving 28p to good causes.

"So if people switch to Desmond from the National Lottery charities will lose out."

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