Lockdown love: Derbyshire pair to tie knot then celebrate at Starbucks where they had first date

Two Derbyshire lovebirds are set to tie the knot after a whirlwind lockdown romance – and celebrate their nuptials at the coffee shop where they had their first date.

Friday, 8th October 2021, 10:50 am
Updated Friday, 8th October 2021, 11:12 am

Helen Bown and Tony Richardson will marry at Chesterfield Register Office on October 19 – a year to the day when they first met at Starbucks at Markham Vale.

After getting hitched, the pair will return there to toast their vows.

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Holmewood couple Tony Richardson and Helen Bown are set to get married after a whirlwind lockdown romance. Picture by Brian Eyre.

The heart-warming story comes after a difficult few years for Helen and Tony, who live at Shakespeare Street in Holmewood.

Helen’s first husband Tony died in 2018. Her new Tony lost his wife nearly three years ago.

They both eventually decided it was time to love again and signed up to the Plenty of Fish (PoF) dating site where they found each other.

Grandmother-of-four Helen, 58, said: “I must have been on about 50 dates which were unsuccessful – and then Tony popped up on PoF.

Congratulations to Helen and Tony on their upcoming wedding.

“We chatted for so many hours before we had our first date at Markham Vale Starbucks.

“We must have been there for about five hours talking and laughing and joking – it was like we’d known each other forever.

“It was definitely love at first sight.

“We get along so well and love each other very much.”

Helen said after her first husband died, she visited a medium who touched her arm and told her she would eventually meet someone with the same first name as her late spouse.

“And I did!,” she added.

“Also, when we said goodbye after our first date, I remember Tony touched my arm just like the medium did.”

Bus driver Tony, originally from Worksop, said he moved to Helen’s house in Holmewood last November to care for her after she contracted coronavirus – and he’s been there ever since.

Their relationship blossomed during the second lockdown and 56-year-old Tony proposed to Helen on New Year’s Eve.

“I absolutely adore her,” he said.

“She’s very special to me and we can’t wait to get married.”

After their ceremony, they will head to Starbucks to celebrate their marriage and no doubt fondly remember their first date.

They will also visit other venues where they enjoyed their first meal and first night together – before jetting off to Dubai for their honeymoon.

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