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Leap Day surprise for Great Yarmouth man

PUBLISHED: 15:22 07 March 2012

Hayley Barton who proposed to her partner Tony Baker on February 29th.   Picture: James Bass

Hayley Barton who proposed to her partner Tony Baker on February 29th. Picture: James Bass

Archant Norfolk Photographic © 2012

A Great Yarmouth man had a Leap Day to remember when his girlfriend dropped to one knee in a high-street jewellers and proposed.

Hayley Barton, who works at the Jobcentre, proposed to her partner of two years, Tony Baker, on Wednesday, February 29 in H Samuel in King Street, Great Yarmouth.

Miss Barton, 32, said: “We have had lots of horrible things happen in our family in the past year like deaths and illnesses and I wanted something nice to happen and something to look forward to. We had talked about getting married so I wasn’t nervous at all. I bought the ring the day before and I knew he would like it.”

Miss Barton decided that she would propose to Mr Baker when she came out of hospital in early February after suffering from a bad asthma attack.

Mr Baker, 28, said: “The proposal really cheered me up. Hayley left a document up on the computer. She said it was something else but it was a ring. She had tried to print a picture of it but the printer broke.”

The couple, who live in Alderson Road, moved in together last July.

By proposing to her boyfriend in the store, Miss Barton entered a competition to win £1,000 towards their wedding.

“She got down on one knee with a titanium ring with a blue band. All that was going through my mind was that I was going to say yes,” Mr Baker said.

“We have been friends for years but we bumped into each other on the off-chance a couple of years ago. I needed some help filling in some housing benefit forms and I knew Hayley worked at the Jobcentre so I asked her for some help.

“We went for a few drinks and things went from there.”

The couple are looking to get married as soon as possible.

Mr Baker, who has two sons from a previous relationship, added “We would like to get married at Sprowston Manor in Norwich.

“When I told my mum we were engaged she was really chuffed - she really likes Hayley.”

The couple celebrated that evening with a takeaway and a DVD.

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