Love on the bus for Valentines

IT was love in the fast lane for Terry Dix and Carmel Hayde. For the A14 became the highway of love as Terry proposed on Valentines Day with a huge romantic gesture.

IT was love in the fast lane for Terry Dix and Carmel Hayde.

For the A14 became the highway of love as Terry proposed on Valentines Day with a huge romantic gesture.

As lovestruck Terry kept his eyes on the road, Carmel only had eyes for the coach in the outside lane that was emblazoned with the words "Will you marry me?".

Carmel's answer need to be coached along, though – she gave her beau an anxious 12-hour wait before she finally said yes.


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Terry, 52, from Gulpher Road, Walton, had been planning to pop the question to his girlfriend for over three weeks and the stunt was rehearsed with pin-point accuracy to make sure the timing spot on. He had only known his Irish sweet heart for just over a month but it was love at first sight.

As he was giving Carmel, a life home along the A14 they were met by a convoy of vehicles led by a fire engine that pulled out from the Nacton Road junction.

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All Carmel could see were the words "Carmel I love you will you marry me?" in huge letters along the side of the 1979 Volvo Plaxton as it overtook them. When the coach passed it released a cascade of heart shaped balloons that bounced off Terry's van.

However his plan was foiled when his would be bride kept him on tenterhooks by refusing to give him an immediate answer. All she would say was: "I'll never forgive him for this, never!"

Andy Procter, driver of the 40ft touring coach said: "Carmel was speechless, overwhelmed and stunned, and so gobsmacked she just wouldn't say yes or no. Apart from that, everything went according to plan. All that planning took just 3 minutes to execute."

"Whilst talking about today's plans in a restaurant the other night, Terry confessed that he and Carmel touch it feels like love and when something feels like love it can't be wrong."

Terry's family were in on the act and are now relieved it is over after having kept the secret for so long.

Fast facts – Engaging proposals

Gamomania is the obsession with issuing odd marriage proposals

Josephine Baker, nicknamed "Black Venus," famous for barely-there dresses and no-holds-barred dance routines and exotic beauty, received approximately 1,500 marriage proposals. She maintained energetic performances and a celebrity status for 50 years until her death in 1975.

A survey conducted last year by MSN found that 14 percent of respondents have received or made marriage proposals in an automobile.

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