| Last updated
A hopeful boyfriend pulled off an 'out of this world' proposal by blasting his engagement ring into space before wowing his now-fiancée with the footage:
Space fanatic Liam Bove, from Biggleswade, Bedfordshire, has loved the cosmos all his life and his girlfriend of 15 years Becky Dixon has shared in that passion ever since they got together. So as you can imagine, she of course said 'yes' when he popped the question.
Liam, a 31-year-old retail systems analyst, had been working on his unique proposal with the company Sent Into Space for more than a year before the ring was fired 100,000 feet above Earth on 10 January.
Incredible footage and images show the turquoise Tiffany box open to the elements and freezing temperatures while the carefully secured ring and its diamond sparkle with the Sun's rays as the Earth can be seen below it.
Upon returning to a muddy field near the launch site in Ashbourne, Derbyshire, the ring and three-hour-long footage of the journey were sent back to Liam so he could prepare to get down on one knee.
Finally, on 29 February, the cosmic Casanova took primary school teacher Becky, 28, for a walk along their local river before showing her the footage and popping the question.
Liam said: "Becky is out of this world to me so I hoped the proposal would reflect that. We always say to each other 'I love you to the far edges of the universe and back' so I wanted to get the ring as close to that as I could.
"I showed her the video and at first she was asking what was happening. She wasn't sure if I was doing a bungee jump. Then she asked why the world was getting smaller. But I had to keep quiet.
"Then the slideshow of our pictures ended and revealed the ring and by that point I was down on one knee. She was absolutely overwhelmed and gobsmacked. Delighted to say the least."
The couple met when they were both in their local sea cadets and have been childhood sweethearts ever since.
Liam said: "I'm really grateful that Sent Into Space could help me fulfil my dream. I wanted it to have beautiful views, nice and calm, and be able to see the stars.
"I've always had a passion for space. I absolutely love it and Becky has grown to share that passion."
He continued: "Some of our friends and family thought I had done the proposal through CGI and didn't realise it had gone up into space.
"When they did find that out, they were absolutely amazed as well."
Sent Into Space was started in 2011 by Dr Chris Rose and Dr Alex Baker after they sent a camera to the outer edges of Earth's atmosphere in December 2010.
The company has done more than 500 flights, using lighter-than-air gas balloons to travel to the upper stratosphere into Near Space, where you can see the curvature of the Earth, space and the thin blue line of the atmosphere on the horizon.
A spokesperson for the company said: "To propose to his girlfriend in style, Liam asked us to send his engagement ring into space so he could ask her to marry him with an incredible gesture of love.
"His efforts paid off and we're happy we could play a part in the progression of their relationship to its next phase and wish them the best of luck as they move forward into married life.
"This is more than just a GoPro on a weather balloon. We build a bespoke launch vehicle for each flight utilising the latest in camera technology and long-range radio and satellite communications."
Chosen for YouChosen for You
Most Read StoriesMost Read