Natalie and her fiancé Mark
Natalie Chapman, a midwife at Basildon Hospital and her fiancé Mark Bomford, were announced the winners at a surprise celebration outside the hospitals maternity unit on Friday 10 July 2020.
At the beginning of lockdown, a group of 26 multi-award-winning Essex wedding suppliers teamed up to offer a competition for one lucky couple, one of whom had to be working in the NHS to win a dream wedding worth more than £26,000.
Rosie Obeney, the owner of Rose Decor Styling, a floral design company in Rayleigh, initiated the competition with various wedding supplies. The team wanted to show their support for the hard work and dedication of NHS staff during the pandemic.
From the flowers, to the bridal hair and make-up, through to the wedding gown andvenue, the independent suppliers from across the county had the whole wedding covered.
Rosie Obeney said, “I wanted to do something to give back to the wonderful NHS, and working in the wedding industry I have a big list of amazing people I love to work with, so I put the feelers out and the response was incredible!
“I was inundated with amazing wedding suppliers offering up their services to a well-deserving NHS couple.”
The competition closed on 30 June with nearly 600 entries. Natalie and her fiancé a paramedic were asked to attend Basildon after being informed they were in the top three.
Both were under the impression that two other finalist were being met and the winners were going to be announced a few days later. Unbeknown to them, their family, friends and colleagues were all in on the surprise and gathered outside of the maternity unit for the celebration.
Natalie said, “I was completely surprised I didn’t expect it at all! I never thought we would win. It’s such a fantastic incentive and I’m grateful to Rosie and all the supplies who have made this possible.
“My friends and family have been really supportive and are so elated for me. One of my 26 supplies is a wedding planner, so she will definitely help me plan every element and elevate the stress that comes along with planning a wedding.”
The couple have set a date with the wedding taking place in March next year at Tuffon Hall Vineyard in Halstead.