A football-mad psychiatric nurse who gave his partner a hoover on Valentine’s Day has earned them the title of Wales’s most unromantic couple.
Chester City fan Richard Baker, 37, bought the love of his life, Louise Andrews, 32, the vacuum cleaner “to keep her busy” while he watched his beloved Blues.
It left Louise less than starry-eyed but now that gruesome gift has landed the duo first prize in a competition run by the Eagles Meadow shopping centre in Wrexham.
As a result Richard and Louise, who live in Connah’s Quay, in Flintshire, are set to celebrate with a dream date at the shopping centre.
The Valentine’s Day package from Eagles Meadow includes a fabulous Clogau Cariad pendant worth £239 from jewellers Mococo.
They will also be able to enjoy a makeover-for-two worth £50 at the Gozo hair and beauty salon, a romantic three-course meal for two at Pizza Express and two tickets for the Odeon Cinema at Eagles Meadow.
Louise, a health worker at Glan Clwyd Hospital, Bodelwyddan, is eight months pregnant and on maternity leave.
She said: “It’s an absolutely brilliant prize and we really are over the moon with winning.
“We have been together for three years and I’m expecting our first child at the end of this month.
“My unromantic present was a hoover, I quote, ‘to keep me busy on my days off!’
“I thought it was a joke at first and I was getting something else but that was it – at least we both like a laugh.
“We both work for the NHS so days off are to relax. It’s ok for Richard to go and watch Chester Football Club play while I get my lovely hoover to use.
“But this prize will give us a lovely Valentine’s Day together before we become parents as we have never had the day off together because of work.
“I couldn’t believe the prizes, especially the pendant and have kept opening the box to look at it.
“And the manager of Mococo and I even got Richard to look at some engagement rings so you never know.”
The couple don’t know whether the new arrival will be a boy or a girl but there’s already a little Chester kit hanging in the wardrobe waiting and the christening is going to be held at the club’s Lookers Vauxhall Stadium in Bumpers Lane.
Richard, a true Blues fan, said: “I’m a bit embarrassed about being named and shamed,” but Louise added: “It’s turned out to have been a wonderful Valentine’s gift after all.
Russell Hooson, the manager of Mococo, said: “It was lovely to see the delight on Louise’s face when she saw the pendant.
“She certainly deserves to be spoilt rotten after the gift of the hoover and I’m delighted we have been able to play our part in giving her a special treat.
“Richard is also a great young man and I hope will learn to be a bit more romantic in future.”
Eagles Meadow manager Kevin Critchley said: “Richard’s a brave man and Louise is a young lady with a good sense of humour – I don’t think I’d risk presenting my wife with an iron.
“It’s certainly done the trick for them though with some fabulous prizes which will give them a Valentine’s Day to remember.”
The couple did face some still competition from other entries to the competition run on Facebook by Eagles Meadow Shopping Centre.
Among the other underwhelming Valentine’s Day gifts entered were socks and a pair of 20p sale earrings with the label still on, nail clippers, tea towels, a hot water bottle, a toaster and an apple corer and a bag of Golden Delicious.