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VIDEO: Andrew gets his girl with flashmob proposal in Bournemouth Square
ROMANCE was in the air when Bournemouth Square provided the setting for a flash mob marriage proposal.
Stunned shoppers watched as security guard Andrew Hall got down on bended knee while being serenaded by a theatre school choir.
The stunt on January 23, organised by search engine Bing, had taken weeks of planning.
Last autumn Andrew, 33, from South Road, Boscombe, entered a competition as part of Microsoft's Bing is for Doing campaign.
He said: “I was walking home from work when the competition came up on my mobile phone, asking what I would prefer to be doing that day.
“I responded by saying that I had a wonderful partner who deserved something special and that I would like to propose. With two young children, money is tight and we couldn't afford to get engaged.
“I forgot all about it until I received a phone call before Christmas saying that, out of thousands of entries, I'd won.”
Andrew's girlfriend Katie Paton, 24, was kept in the dark until the day of the proposal. He said: “Keeping it secret was really stressful; I met the production team in Bournemouth and picked a ring.
“There was a rehearsal and I had to ensure I had my mobile phone with me, at all times, so Katie didn't guess something was going on.”
The couple were videoed walking hand in hand from Bournemouth Gardens into the Square where a busker is singing 'Soldier'; their special song.
Suddenly a waitress accompanies him before a street sweeper joins in and Andrew's parents emerge from the singing crowd with their sons; two-year-old Lucas and eight-month-old Jacob.
Katie said: “It was a complete surprise; I thought that we were going into town to have a meal for my birthday.
“I'd been nagging Andrew about getting married and luckily he knew the sort of ring I'd like. It was a very emotional moment and an unforgettable day.”
Andrew said: “After keeping the proposal under wraps for so long it was such a relief, especially when Katie said 'I do.'”