AN ANIMAL lover got the wedding proposal of her dreams when her boyfriend got down on one knee – surrounded by Edinburgh’s world-famous penguins.
Romantic Martin Edwards even presented Lianne Stephanie with a pebble, a key part of the courtship ritual in the penguin world.
The couple were enjoying a week in Scotland and visited the zoo on Monday having signed up for the Penguin Experience which allows visitors behind the scenes with the Antarctic birds.
Lianne, a teacher from Shrewsbury, Shropshire, was stunned when Martin got down on one knee on the bridge at penguin rock and popped the question.
Along with a diamond ring he presented a pebble inscribed with the words: “Will you marry me?” In the penguin world, the male tries to impress his intended mate by presenting her with the biggest pebble he can manage.
Lianne uploaded the pictures to her Facebook page along with the instructions Martin gave to zoo staff about his proposal.
The note reads: “Martin and his girlfriend are doing a penguin experience. They will help with the parade then feed penguins in the enclosure.
“After they have finished their experience, depending on the weather he will propose to his girlfriend.
“This will take place on the penguin bridge or the indoor penguin viewing point.”
The last line adds: “We are to be standing by with a bottle of prosecco and two glasses. Please be hidden from sight.”
Lianne wrote: “Now I’ve managed to stop crying and get off the phone…Martin planned the most amazing day.
“After going on a penguin walk, feeding penguins and ending up on a bridge surrounded by penguins, he passed me a pebble asking me to marry him and got down on one knee.
“Possibly the happiest girl in the world right now. I couldn’t have asked for a better proposal than that.”
Friends and family commented on the pictures, sharing their delight at the news.
Sarah Thomas wrote: “Huge congratulations to you both. What a perfect way to propose surrounded by your favourite animals.”
Kimberley Ann said: “So happy for you. You just need to find a penguin ring bearer now.”
Lauren Wagstaff added: “Think this was definitely the best proposal you could ever have had Lianne.”
And Matthew Mason joked: “So Lianne, the wedding proposal was weather dependant.”
The couple also publicly thanked staff at Edinburgh zoo for making sure the day ran smoothly.
They wrote on the zoo’s Facebook page: “We would like to say a massive thank you to Erica and everyone at Edinburgh zoo for making a very memorable day for us yesterday.
“I still can’t believe he proposed. Hope you see this message. Lots of love Lianne and Martin.”