A Falkirk man will get hitched today in a whirlwind wedding reception after his blushing bride proposed on Leap Day.
Calum Beck’s partner of eight years Charlotte Leask (27) took advantage of the once in four years opportunity to pop the question to the 26-year-old and won them a wedding and a dream holiday.
The custom is said to originate from an old Irish legend when St Brigid struck a deal with St Patrick to allow women to propose to men instead of the other way round, as is tradition, every four years.
Unknown to Calum, Charlotte entered a competition on radio station Heart Scotland’s breakfast show which saw her and another hopeful propose to their partners.
And after popping balloons and finding a lucky ring, the lovebirds were crowned the winners on air during the morning show hosted by Robin Galloway.
The prize included a trip to Canada, but first they will be married this afternoon at the radio station, which has been transformed into a weeding venue, and have their union blessed by a humanist witnessed by close family and friends.
Calum said: “I was quite nervous this morning, but now it’s happened I’m really happy and can’t wait to go to Canada. We’ve been with our parents before on a family holiday and now we get the chance to go on our own and really take it all in.”
In some places Leap Day is known as Bachelors’ Day. If the man refuses a marriage proposal on February 29 he is expected to pay a penalty by buying the woman a dress or gown, or give her money.
In some European societies, the man gives the woman 12 pairs of gloves so she can hide her finger which does not have an engagement ring on it.
Shocked Charlotte, originally from Orkney but now living in Edinburgh, said: “I feel overwhelmed at the moment, it doesn’t feel real. I just can’t believe we won.”
After winning the happy couple were whisked away for their big day which includes everything from choosing wedding rings to picking a wedding dress and kilt, as well as mini hen and stag do’s.
They will be chauffeured back to Heart Scotland for the ceremony before jetting off to Canada to enjoy their honeymoon courtesy of Canadian Affair.
Heart Breakfast’s Robin Galloway said: “What an amazing day to be part of. I’m so happy for Charlotte and Calum and wish them all the best for the future with many happy years together.”
Marketing manager at Canadian Affair Annabel Leckenby said: “We’re absolutely delighted for Charlotte and Calum and hope they have a wonderful time on their ‘honeymoon’ in Canada, one of the most romantic destinations in the world.”