Newly-weds’ nervous wait over paperwork

FELIXSTOWE: A couple who married after meeting on the internet today face a nervous wait on the next stage of their journey together.

Mandy Dickerson met her Moroccan husband Badr El Menbaoui and fell in love after meeting through an online dating site a year ago.

Now they have married – but face an anxious wait to see if Mr El Menbaoui, 32, will be allowed to settle in the UK.

“We had a fantastic wedding day – everything was just perfect,” said Mrs El Menbaoui, 44, of Avocet Court, off Langer Road, Felixstowe.

“Because Badr couldn’t come to England until April we only had six weeks to plan everything and it was a bit of a panic, but it was great and we had a wonderful day.

“We then had a mini-honeymoon in Norfolk and will have a proper one later on.

“However, we need now to get a marriage visa sorted out so that he will be able to work.

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“At the moment, he is like a house-husband and he very much wants to get a job.”

The couple, who married at the Ipswich Registry Office, are filling in all the paperwork for the marriage visa which they hope the Border Agency will approve within eight weeks.

However, that will not be the end of the bureaucracy – for in two years’ time, he will have to apply for indefinite leave to remain in this country and there will be further forms to fill in and the national test of Britishness to take.

“We just hope everything will go well and we are going through all the proper procedures,” said Mrs El Menbaoui, who works in accounts for the Mediterranean Shipping Company, in Ipswich.

The pair met on the dating website www.tagged.com on May 10 last year.

n Did you meet your partner on the internet? Have you coped with a long-distance relationship? Tell us your story. Write to Your Letters, The Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or you can send an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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