A NELSON couple are dreaming of the sound of wedding bells as they bid to win a marriage competition.
Wayne Dyke and Mandy Pipe are one of five couples to have reached final stages of 2BR’s Wedding of the Year competition and need your votes to make their dream day a reality.
The pair grew up together and were childhood sweethearts in West Sussex before living apart for 24 years, only getting back together in June 2010. The Manor Street couple have been engaged since January 2011 and are saving to tie the knot but admit winning the competition would be “the icing on the cake”.
Mandy said: “We went to primary school and high school together and hung around as teenagers. My parents moved to Nelson when I was 19 and we went our separate ways.
“We then got back in contact over Facebook. I was looking at old friends down south and saw Wayne’s name pop up. I emailed him and he replied and it went from there. We started chatting for a couple of weeks then he came up here and I went down there over a few months and he proposed to me.
“He’s just the same as he was, a perfect gentleman, caring and would do anything for me. He has the qualities that not a lot of people have.”
Wayne said: “We’ve known each other since the age of seven but went our separate ways when a house fire meant my family moved away and Mandy moved north. Then I got a chance email from Mandy two years ago, and what do you know, I was living in Nelson a few months later.
“I was driving to work when I heard about the competition on the radio and thought ‘why not?’ Then, much to my surprise and Mandy’s, a couple of months later, we got the news we had been shortlisted.
“There was something about her all those years ago, and there’s something about her now. I can’t put my finger on it to be honest but she’s just the perfect woman.”
To vote, visit www.2br.co.uk/Win/wedding-of-the-year.php and click on Mandy and Wayne. Voting closes at midnight on Tuesday.