Real Proposal Stories

A collection of romantic, emotional and dream wedding proposals from real couples who married at a Bijou Wedding Venue.

Romantic Proposal stories share by Bijou newlyweds

At Bijou we love hearing about and sharing romantic wedding stories, from proposals in the sand to men down on one knee in their pj’s and slippers on a frosty Christmas morn! Every love story is different and at Bijou were not only delighted to help plan and host incredible weddings for amazing couples week on week, but we simply love being able to share the stories afterwards. 

Our real wedding section is simply full of wedding inspiration if you’re already engaged and looking for the perfect wedding venue – but if you’ve not yet got that ring on your finger, why not share this article with your other half and see if they can top any of the romantic proposal stories that we’ve shared below? 

We hope that you love reading about these engagement stores as much as we’ve loved watching these couples take the journey from their initial brochure request, to visiting and booking their dream wedding venue, through to actually saying ‘I do’ with Bijou.

Be inspired… 

Couple: Natalie and Alex
Wedding Venue: Notley Abbey
Wedding Date: 7th April, 2015

Alex took his girlfriend Natalie up to the top of Craigendarroch Hill in Scotland. As the couple were gazing at the glorious mountain view, Alex got down on one knee (with a perfect ring) and asked Natalie if she would make him the happiest man in the world and marry him.

Read the Game of Thrones themed real wedding story of Natalie and Alex here!  

Couple: Tracy and Anthony 
Wedding Venue: Notley Abbey
Wedding Date: 3rd October, 2015

Having met later in life and dated for only 2 years, Anthony decided that at double celebration was in order and decided to propose to his love on her birthday, on a sunset beach in Mallorca. The couple had Tracy’s engagement ring and both of their wedding rings designed at a bespoke jeweller in London after returning from their dream holiday. 

Read the lovely real wedding story of Tracy and Anthony here!

Couple: Victoria and David
Wedding Venue: Notley Abbey
Wedding Date: 25th March, 2016 

Victoria and David were staying at a beautiful country manor near Cheltenham for the weekend and had gone for an evening stroll after dinner to watch the romantic sunset. Much to Victoria’s surprise, David got down on one knee. Victoria was in shock and said "get up, what are you doing?" Needless to say, David stayed there, finished the proposal and Victoria said YES! 

Read the daffodil themed real wedding story of Victoria and David here!

Couple: Joanne and Dominic 
Wedding Venue: Notley Abbey
Wedding Date: 16th April, 2016 

After having researched engagement rings for several months, Dominic chose a beautiful Cartier ring for Joanne before popping the question overlooking St. Katherine’s Dock in London. It was a beautiful moment that Joanne will never forget! 

Read the Hollywood Glamour themed real wedding story of Joanne and Dominic here! 

Couple: Cath and Craig 
Wedding Venue: Notley Abbey
Wedding Date: 22nd April, 2016 

Craig and Cath’s proposal story happened at the top of a mountain during a family ski/snowboarding trip to the Alps. Snowboarding is Cath’s passion so it seemed apt to pop the question doing something the couple both enjoyed dearly. Craig had secretly told Cath’s father about his proposal plan, so as a surprise, her father hid a heavy bottle of bubbly in his rucksack and skied with it all day until the proposal had taken place. A beautiful ring and champagne on the slopes made for a perfect, family-fun proposal. 

Read Cath and Craig’s Beatle themed real wedding story here!  

Couple: Anna and David
Wedding Venue: The Bijou Boathouse
Wedding Date: 14th May, 2016 

David proposed to Anna on the Southern Coast by writing the words ‘Will You Marry Me’ in the sand. He had already chosen the perfect engagement ring and the bride-to-be accepted his proposal with pleasure! 

Read the real wedding story of Anna and David here! 

Couple: Jennifer and James 
Wedding Venue: Notley Abbey
Wedding Date: 14th May, 2016 

James took Jennifer completely by surprise when he proposed on Christmas morning whilst the couple were still in the pyjamas enjoying a festive scrambled eggs on toast!  Being her pragmatic self, Jennifer made James wait a whole week before giving him an official ‘YES’!

Read the emotional real wedding story of Jennifer and James here!

Couple: Phillippa and James
Wedding Venue: Cain Manor
Wedding Date: 10th June, 2016  

Phillippa and James both live in Dubai and met via the online dating app, Tinder. Whilst holidaying in Venice the couple decided to take a romantic gondola ride on the Grand Canal. James knew that the timing was right and therefore got down on one knee and proposed! The couple celebrated their engagement by travelling on to Florence! 

Read the real wedding story of Phillippa and James here! 

Couple: Bronwyn and John 
Wedding Venue: Notley Abbey
Wedding Date: 25th June, 2016 

Bronwyn, from Australia but living in the UK, met John through work. After having travelled home to visit her family, John surprised Bronwyn with a romantic trip to a destination that she didn’t find out until they were actually at the airport. Much to her delight, they were off to Paris, which also happened to be her favourite city in the world! John had arranged a room at a beautiful hotel at Place Vendome; Bronwyn had no idea he was going to propose, although she did think he must have really missed her during the week she was away! The couple went for a walk along the River Seine and John got down on one knee on the Pont Neuf. John hadn’t previously chosen an engagement ring for Bronwyn, as he hoped the couple could choose something in Paris together. Unfortunately for John, but fortunately for Bronwyn, it transpired that the only jeweller open in Paris on a Sunday was Tiffany’s on the Champs Elysees!

Read the real wedding story of Bronwyn and John here! 

Couple: Mercy and Tom 
Wedding Venue: Botleys Mansion 
Wedding Date: 1st July, 2016 

Mercy and Tom met on their first day at University in Middlebury, Vermont, back in 2002.  After a 10-year friendship, the couple realised that they were more than just friends. A couple of years later, after a festive lunch with friends and family over in America, Tom proposed after having asked Mercy’s mother for her daughters’ hand in marriage! 

Read the real wedding story of Mercy and Tom here! 

Couple: Thea and Sam 
Wedding Venue: Botleys Mansion 
Wedding Date: 10th July, 2016 

Sam told Thea that he would marry her on the day the day they first met! Thea needed further convincing and dated Sam for three years before a surprise proposal took place in France. This proposal story took place while the couple were holidaying in St. Tropez. Over a romantic French dinner, Sam popped the question- the couple then went home and popped a bottle of Champagne to celebrate! 

Read the beautiful real wedding story of Thea and Sam here! 

Couple: India and Tom 
Wedding Venue: Cain Manor 
Wedding Date: 29th July, 2016 

India and Tom met in 6th form and after a 7-year relationship decided to buy their first home together. As they were excitedly walking to their new front door, Tom ran ahead and bent down on one knee with an engagement ring that he’d chosen alone. India was so overwhelmed with Tom’s proposal that it took her 20 minutes to finally say YES! 

Read the real wedding story of India and Tom here!

Couple: Kate and Matt
Venue: Notley Abbey  
Wedding Date: 29th July, 2016

Kate met Matt during her six month travelling expedition to Australia. Her visa was due to expire and she was planning her return back to the UK when Matt casually said ‘I’ll come’. Kate and Matt travelled back to the UK as a couple, but started planning a family holiday back to Australia right away. On the 27th of the month – a date that means a lot to the couple – Matt and Kate decided to climb Mount Coolum. At the top of the mountain, all red-faced and sweaty, Matt produced a gorgeous engagement ring that he’d very nervously carried in his hand-luggage on their journey over to Australia. Fellow climbers cheered them on and the couple celebrated their engagement in a rainforest villa that evening. 

Read all about Kate and Matt’s English country garden wedding at Notley Abbey here!

Couple: Victoria and Ben 
Wedding Venue: Botleys Mansion 
Wedding Date: 31st July, 2016 

Ben whisked Victoria away to the romantic city of Venice as a belated birthday getaway surprise. After having dragged her around the entire city in less than 3 hours because of his nerves, he finally plucked up the courage and got down on one knee in a private water taxi, as the couple were on their way out to dinner. He opened the box in his hand and the most perfect sparkly diamond ring was inside.  

Read the real wedding story of Victoria and Ben here! 

Couple: Lauren and Joe
Venue: Botleys Mansion 
Wedding Date: 6th August, 2016 

Lauren and Joe dated for 5 years before Joe planned an unforgettable proposal for his bride-to-be whilst the couple were holidaying with family in Australia. During a bush BBQ at Ayres Rock, Joe whisked Lauren away so that they could have some alone time. Joe presented Lauren with an engagement ring in a spot that is said to be the clearest night’s sky in the whole of the southern hemisphere. The stars felt close and the sky was so clear that it made the stars, and Lauren’s engagement ring, sparkle even more. Joe popped his important question and Lauren accepted with pleasure. Their spectacular summer wedding at Botleys Mansion happened 18 months later. 

Read all about Lauren and Joe’s incredible wedding day at Botleys Mansion here!

Couple: Anna and Steve
Wedding Venue: Botleys Mansion  
Wedding Date: 12th August, 2016 

Anna and Steve were celebrating an early Christmas Day 2015 with their families, on Christmas Eve. Much to her surprise, the family dog, Beau, went running up to Anna dressed in a pair of Santa trousers, carrying an engagement ring. A simple question of ‘So what do you think?’ commenced Steve and Anna’s wedding planning journey. 

Read all about Steve and Anna’s stunning summer wedding at Botleys Mansion here! 

Couple: Charlotte and Chris
Wedding Venue: Cain Manor 
Wedding Date: 18th August, 2016 

Charlotte and Chris met during their school days when they were just 14 but didn’t get together until their adult years. As a Christmas present, Chris had booked Charlotte a spa break, which they both looked forward to. Much to Charlotte’s surprise, Chris had pre-booked her a manicure for shortly after the couple had arrived at the hotel. Then, in his swimming trunks, spa dressing gown and slippers, Chris bent down on one knee and proposed with a bespoke engagement ring that he’d had designed for his wife-to-be! 

Read the real wedding story with a home-made twist of Charlotte and Chris here! 

Couple: Gemma and Daniel
Venue: Notley Abbey 
Wedding Date: 23rd September, 2016 

Daniel planned his romantic proposal to take place on a boat as the couple were gently flowing down the River Thames in the beautiful town of Henley in Oxfordshire. A few minor emergencies nearly stood in the way of Daniel’s plans, but at the last minute, everything came together and he bent down on one knee and popped the question to his dream girl, Gemma. 

Read all about Gemma and Daniel’s wedding in the walled garden at Notley Abbey here!

Couple: Natalie and Jake
Wedding Venue: Cain Manor 
Wedding Date: 24th September, 2016 

Natalie arrived home from work on a Friday night to find the dining room filled with 200 pearlised ivory helium balloons, each one hanging from a satin ribbon. On the end of each ribbon was a ticket, business card or other keepsake from the hundreds of places the couple had been to together in the years before. There were candles everywhere, champagne on ice and their song was playing in the background. It was a dream proposal! 

Read the elegant real wedding story of Natalie and Jake here! 

Couple: Charlotte and Jon
Venue: Botleys Mansion  
Wedding Date: 25th September, 2016

Charlotte spent 6 years teaching English in Japan and fell in love with the country, the culture and the people. After moving back to the UK she promised herself to visit her much-loved country every other year in the future. Her partner Jon had never visited Japan, so the couple decided to book a 2-week holiday so that they could explore together. On the last night of their holiday, Jon bent down on one knee and popped the question with a ring that he’d bought whilst in Japan, but the couple then shopped for an ‘official’ engagement ring when they returned home to the UK. 

You can read all about Charlotte and Jon’s Sunday wedding at Botleys Mansion here! 

Couple: Victoria and Michael
Wedding Venue: Notley Abbey  
Wedding Date: 8th October, 2016 

Michael whisked Victoria away on a surprise trip to Las Vegas. He’d purchase first class tickets and booked them in to a fabulous hotel with an even more fabulous back drop! Upon their arrival at the fancy Bellagio, Michael, in a traditional manner, bent down on one knee and proposed to his future wife-to-be with a ring that he’d had made bespoke in Dubai. Victoria accepted the incredible ring and the couple enjoyed planning every moment of their wow-factor wedding.

Read all about Victoria and Michaels’s wondrous wedding at Notley Abbey here!

Couple: Hannah and James
Wedding Venue: Botleys Mansion  
Wedding Date: 29th October, 2016 

James proposed to Hannah during a strawberries and Champagne filled picnic within the grounds of a Castle in Farnham, Surrey. Hannah was so overwhelmed that she forgot to say ‘yes’ properly – but after she had the ring on her finger, the couple celebrated their engagement at a local pub with friends for the rest of the afternoon. 

Read all about Hannah and James’s romantic autumn nuptials at Botleys Mansion here!

Couple: Emma and Tim
Venue: Botleys Mansion 
Wedding Date: 3rd December, 2016

Emma and Tim were together for 9 years before deciding to book a luxurious weekend away to Dubrovnik, Croatia. Having nervously managed to get through airport security without any issues, Tim was delighted to finally be able to propose to his wife-to-be, Emma, with a ring that he’d chosen himself on the cobbled streets of the ancient town. The couple celebrated their engagement until the early hours of the morning as they sat on the terrace of their hotel enjoying a bottle of Champagne and the incredible views. 

Be inspired by Emma and Tim’s festive winter wedding at Botleys Mansion here!

Couple: Emma and James
Venue: Notley Abbey  
Wedding Date: 3rd December, 2016

James took his girlfriend Emma away for the weekend to a small town called Crickhowell in Wales, in the hope that he’d return from home with a fiancée. The couple went for a romantic walk in the pouring rain on the Saturday morning and in a field full of sheep, James popped the question with a sentimental ring, designed with a diamond that had once belonged to his grandmother. 

Read all about Emma and James’s woodland themed winter wedding at Notley Abbey here! 

Couple: Emma and Dwayne
Venue: Cain Manor  
Wedding Date: 21st December, 2016

Instead of buying each other a Christmas present each year, Emma and Dwayne club their money and go on a romantic winter break. In 2015 they found a great 3-night deal to Prague and Dwayne thought that this would be the ultimate location to propose. Dwayne nervously tried to propose to Emma twice during their trip, but he was third time lucky and managed to pull Emma aside and ask for her hand in marriage whilst the couple were on a brewery tour. Guests on the tour with Emma and Dwayne were delighted for the couple and were able to celebrate the couple’s happy news with them throughout the end of the excursion. Emma and Dwayne celebrated a winter wedding exactly 1 year after Dwayne’s destination proposal.

Cain Manor was the location of Emma and Dwayne’s romantic winter wedding. Read all about their day here! 

Couple: Susan and Mark
Venue: Cain Manor  
Wedding Date: 22nd December, 2016 

Susan (a huge Disney fan) and Mark spent New Year’s Eve 2015 at Disneyland in Paris. Shortly after the clock on Cinderella’s Castle struck midnight, Susan thought that the couple would head out of the theme park with everyone else, and head back to their hotel. The couple walked up to the castle one more time and Mark got down on one knee and proposed with a stunning platinum engagement ring featuring a heart shaped diamond. Susan accepted Mark’s proposal and the couple danced back down Main Street to the sounds of ‘We Belong Together’ from Toy Story 3. The couple chose to feature the same song at their wedding at Cain Manor a year later. 

Read about Susan and Mark’s intimate wedding at Cain Manor here!

Couple: Gemma and Joss
Venue: Notley Abbey  
Wedding Date: 22nd December, 2016 

Joss planned a romantic proposal for his dream girl Gemma, in a woodland area located close to where he grew up. Late in the afternoon, as the sun was just about to go down, Joss suggested that the couple take their dog for a walk. The moment was perfectly timed as the couple came across a candle-lit clearing in the woods. Joss proposed and Gemma as the sun set and within moments, their families both appeared out of the woods to congratulate the newly-engaged couple. It was a perfect, unforgettable moment and the couple spent the next 2 years planning their story book themed wedding at Notley Abbey. 

Read all about Gemma and Joss’s elegant wedding at Notley Abbey here! 

Couple: Naomi and James
Venue: Cain Manor
Wedding Date: 24th March, 2017 

Naomi and James were planning their annual trip to Switzerland to visit Naomi’s grandparents when James decided to plan his destination proposal. He convinced Naomi that he was going to make a hobby of filming their trip – so that she wouldn't be suspicious of anything. James planned a romantic picnic for two to take place on a private speedboat on Lake Geneva and after a glass of champagne, he started to read Naomi a love letter that he’d written previously to ensure that every meaningful word was said. At the end of the letter, James was on one knee holding a gold solitaire diamond ring. Their experience on Lake Geneva was all captured on film and continued with a family lunch to celebrate their engagement. 

See details from Naomi and James’s spring wedding at Cain Manor here! 

Couple: Caitlin and Chris
Venue: Silchester House  
Wedding Date: 31st March, 2017 

Chris planned to propose to his girlfriend Caitlin during a family holiday to Fuerteventura. The couple decided to spend a day and a night away from their family in order to have some ‘alone time’ and ended up having dinner in a romantic restaurant in the evening. They were escorted to a candle-lit table in the corner and were given a free bottle of wine. Their garlic bread arrived cut in to heart shaped pieces, as did their potatoes to go along side their steak. When their cheesecake dessert came out with ‘I love you’ written on top, to the sounds of Mariah Carey love songs playing in the background, Caitlin thought that they were in an OTT romantic restaurant, but within moments, Chris was bent down on one knee holding an engagement ring box. Caitlin’s answer was ‘yes, yes, yes!’. 

Caitlin and Chris’s spring wedding at Silchester House is a must-read!