A couple who have dedicated their lives to helping bereaved families after the death of their son have won £1 million in EuroMillions UK Millionaire Maker.

Colin and Eithne Bell run a charity to assist those whose loved ones die overseas.

The couple from Newry, Co Down, lost their 26-year-old son Kevin in a hit-and-run incident in New York in 2013.

The harrowing experience of trying to bring his body home motivated them to set up the Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust.

In the last four years they have provided financial assistance to hundreds of Irish families confronted with similarly tragic circumstances.

The fund has helped repatriate the bodies of more than 200 Irish people from abroad since it was first set up.

Mr Bell told an Oireachtas Foreign Affairs Committee meeting last September that  the fund has brought people home from Australia and the US, but it has also repatriated the body of an 87-year-woman who died on holidays in Bulgaria.

The couple said they were at home last week when they learned of their win.

"I was watching the early evening news with Eithne when the EuroMillions numbers flashed up on screen," said Mr Bell.

"I remembered that I'd bought a ticket for the draw but that I hadn't checked my numbers so I took out my wallet, went online and was disappointed to see that I hadn't matched any numbers.

"However, when I checked the unique Millionaire Maker code I was totally floored to see that it matched my code.

"I told Eithne that I thought we had just won £1 million and she laughed, thinking that I was joking.

"But when I repeated it and she saw the look on my face, she soon realised that I was being serious."

The couple said the sharing the news with each of their six children was unforgettable.

"My wife would love a sun room extension on the house and a new car and I plan to buy a couple of ten year Premium Level Tickets for Croke Park," Mr Bell said.

"But we'll spend most of it changing the lives of our children - that will bring us so much joy."