How We Met
We met on the dating app Tinder and I sent Joanne a daft question saying: “Does it bother you that sloths sometimes fall out of trees because they mistake their arms for branches?” Quick as a flash, she replied: “Does it bother you that Manchester City got knocked out of the FA Cup by Wigan?” Straight away I thought: ‘Wow, for her to come back with that so quick, she’s the girl for me’. My next question to Joanne was: “I hope you don’t support Manchester United?”. That might have been a deal-breaker.
how they asked
When it came to how to proposing I wanted to do something out of the ordinary. I thought doing it on holiday or something like that was a bit predictable. I wanted to propose somewhere where she would not expect it. I thought it would be great to propose while we were doing something we loved together so I thought a football match would be a great option. Having found proposal planners, Captured Proposals, I loved the idea of my proposal to Joanne captured on camera while she was unaware. I got in touch with the company and told them I wanted to propose to Joanne before the Manchester City v Chelsea match in Manchester and wanted the proposal captured on camera and video so we would have a keepsake of the moment. Captured Proposals contacted Manchester City on my behalf and after speaking to them, asked if I wanted to propose to Joanne on the stage at City Square.
The City Stage is an area outside the stadium where they have a stage where they do things like interview former players and have bands playing before the match. I was up for it but had to work out a way of getting Joanne on the stage without her being suspicious. Captured Proposals organised a fake competition and e-mailed me saying they had a competition on stage to win prizes before the game and that it was for couples and did I have someone who would come on stage with me. I showed Joanne the e-mail and asked her if she would do it with me and she said of course. She didn’t suspect anything at all as I had done a few competitions with City before and had done things like go on the pitch at half-time for competitions. Unbeknownst to Joanne, the photographers from Captured Proposals were waiting as the couple went on stage. Family and friends were there, too.
The “competition” was for the men to do as many press-ups as they could. Luckily, I used to be in the Army so this was a good challenge for me. The other couple taking part in the fake contest were then taken off stage and I was handed the microphone in front of a stunned Joanne. I told Joanne “I love you and we are both here doing something we love so I thought it would be the perfect opportunity” And then I got down on one knee and proposed. It was a complete surprise to Joanne. Her reaction showed how surprised she was and how she wasn’t expecting it. She smiled, laughed and cried. There were about three or four thousand people watching us on the stage and we later found out they had put it on the big screen inside the grounds too so more than 25,000 people saw my proposal. I am just glad Joanne said yes. I would probably never have gone to another game if she had turned me down! We have lived together long enough and have talked about starting a family so, deep down, I did think she would say yes, but you still get that moment of nervousness.
When people propose, it is normally just the two of them and people like to know how it happened. The way we did it means we can actually show people that moment and have the memory of the proposal captured. As well as pictures and a video of the proposal, Captured Proposals put the proposal on Facebook Live so family and friends who weren’t there could watch it. Joanne said she was so shocked, and couldn’t believe it.
She felt every emotional and said: “The way Chris proposed was perfect and summed up our relationship perfectly. It was very thoughtful and I love him lots. I think it was brilliant the way he had his proposal and my reaction captured. It goes so quickly when it happens that it feels like a blur. Being able to watch the video and see it all again is really nice. We both love football and it means a lot to us so it was the perfect proposal.”