Love is in the air for Warrington Campus graduates

Posted on 12th February 2018

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, love is definitely in the air for a couple who met while studying at the Warrington Campus of the University of Chester.

Sanjay and Jayde
Sanjay and Jayde

Sanjay Kurian popped the question to his now fiancée Jayde Knox during a weekend reunion in the exact room in the hall of residence (Newton) where they originally met 10 years ago during Freshers’ Week.

The couple were visiting the Warrington Campus with a group of University friends when Sanjay, 30, from Shrewsbury swept Jayde, 28, from Royton, near Oldham, off her feet with his romantic gesture. He had already been in contact with the University, their families and friends to plan the perfect proposal.

Sanjay, who works as a HR Officer, said: “It was literally 10 years to the day we met and it just so happened that day was also our friend Aaron’s 30th birthday. I’d spoken to him a year earlier to see if I could steal his birthday from him and use that as a reason to get us to the University. I then I contacted all of our friends and family to make sure they were there.

“When we got to the Campus, I convinced her to walk with me to her room where we had met. She looked at the room and then walked out almost immediately! I coaxed her back in to the room, where I finally proposed with the ring she has always wanted (she told me over the years the exact ring she wanted!) and I had made for her.”

Jayde, who is a Dispensing Optician Manager, added: “He got down on one knee and pulled out a ring box and I just started to cry, I was crying that much I couldn't see properly as he put the ring on my finger and he asked if I liked it. I couldn't see it but I said I loved it – it turns out he had been taking notes over the years for the exact ring I wanted. It was perfect.

“We headed down to the Students’ Union Bar then, on the way he told me he hadn't asked my parents for permission and that I should call them - I did. We then went into the bar and the majority of our University friends were waiting in the front of the bar. I started crying again - they knew about the whole thing and had kept it a surprise from me for a whole year. I was shocked!

“They then ushered me around to the next part of the bar where the pool tables are and Sanjay's friends from home were playing pool - it was surreal I couldn't work out what was happening and I cried again. Sanjay's family then popped out from behind and congratulated us and I cried even more - I didn't think I could take any more surprises. Finally, we walked through to the last room and my friends from home jumped out and surprised me and told me to turn around for me to see my family, including my mum and dad, standing there (also crying along with me). We hugged and danced and Sanjay made a speech to thank everyone for coming.”

The surprises didn’t end there, with Sanjay taking his new fiancée and their guests to the restaurant they went to for their first dinner date for a meal that evening.

The next morning, Sanjay woke Jayde to tell her they were off later that day for a four-day break to Spain, to the destination of their first holiday together.

She said: “I told him I didn't have the time off work because he didn't tell me I needed to book it, but he had already been in touch with the Director of my store and booked it off for me in secret!”

The couple, who now live in Manchester, plan to get married on September 21, 2019.

Sanjay added that the Warrington Campus was the perfect place for the couple to get engaged and thanked all the staff who made sure the rooms were available and helped with his surprise.

He added: “All my fondest memories are with the friends I made at University. We had some of our best times living and working with our friends, all of which we are both still in touch with and many of whom came to the engagement.”

Mark Shone, Senior Operations Manager in the University’s Residential Living team, said: “We were delighted to help Sanjay with his engagement plans and we wish he and Jayde a long and happy life together.”