33-year-old Mani Manota of Leeds, Yorkshire, yesterday popped the all important question to long-term girlfriend Maria,25, at 1200ft above York!

The happy couple who met six years ago whilst working in a bar had both talked about the prospect of marriage but Maria had no idea what Mani had planned.

“I thought about Paris and the Eiffel Tower but everyone seemed to have done that and for some reason, it seemed too cheesy. I was nervous about the whole thing and having one date cancelled due to weather I was nervous right up until the night before when the message from pilot Dave Sutcliffe said the flight was going ahead, no turning back now! Maria didn't know anything about the Balloon ride. I asked her to wear warm clothes she wouldn't mind getting dirty, she assumed I was going to take her horse riding or visiting a farm, she had no idea until we turned up at York Racecourse and I pointed out the baskets. Much to my relief she was ecstatic at the prospect of going up in a hot air balloon, a first for us both,” said Mani.

At 1200ft the moment Mani had been waiting for arrived and as Maria turned away he dropped to one knee! Of course, she said yes and they celebrated with a traditional Champagne toast after landing.

“The flight was brilliant, very peaceful up in the air with no engine noise letting just the wind direct us, we had brilliant views over York, we could see for miles. We both liked the fact we were involved in everything from getting the balloon off the trailer to the inflation and then helping to get it deflated too. The overall experience was brilliant and I would recommend it to anyone. I’m glad I chose Virgin.”

Congratulations to you both! The team at Virgin Balloon Flights wish you the very best for your wedding and future life together.

For information regarding hot air balloon ride launch sites and prices, visit our website or call 01952 212750.