Belfast Telegraph

Watch: How boyfriend's New Year's Eve board game proposal had Eilish lost for words

By Claire Williamson

It's a question that usually you make sure is heard as clear as possible.

But one Co Tyrone bride-to-be had to do a little bit of guessing as her boyfriend used the hilarious game of Speak Out to pop the question.

The hit game sees players put a mouthpiece that doesn't let you close your mouth as you try and read out cards of random phrases to your team.

Louie Somerville (29) used the quirky game to surprise his childhood sweetheart Eilish Rafferty (28) with a very special New Year's Eve proposal.

The pair met in their local village of Donaghmore and have known each other their whole lives. The couple now live in Bunbury near Perth in Australia after moving there just over six years ago.

She said: "We were definitely childhood sweethearts - we've been together for just under 13 years in January."

Eilish said Louie always vowed he would never propose on New Year's Eve, so the exciting interruption to the game came as a real shock.

"He always said I would never know when it was going to happen and it would be a big surprise," she said.

"He said it would never be on New Year's Eve.

"I think with the video you can see how big of a shock it was."

Eilish Rafferty and Louie Somerville
Eilish Rafferty and Louie Somerville

She continued: "We were playing a game we play regularly; we had family over for Christmas so we didn't go out and just played some games instead."

During the game, before his next turn, Louie sent Eilish's brother a text and told him to record his next go.

She said: "My brother had no idea what was going to happen and he just thought he was going to do something silly because he is such a messer.

"So my brother started videoing and I didn't even realise.

"He just said it in the middle of the whole game. I was like, 'Oh my God is this a prank' and I said a couple of times, 'Are you joking?' before I even answered.

"Our friend was reading the card he was supposed to be reading out and saying, 'This is terrible, that's not what it says'.

"Nobody knew what he was doing until he brought the ring out."

But Eilish said it was the perfect proposal for them and puts their long-lasting happy relationship down to "laughter and fun".

"It was the perfect proposal. It sums up who we are, and who he is as a person and was absolutely perfect for me."

She added: "He's just so much fun and unpredictable and keeps you on your toes every day. And he makes me laugh every single day. That's the secret, absolutely."

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