A luxury wedding and honeymoon in blissful Bali should have been nothing short of idyllic for Lucy Burgoyne.
But instead of days spent lying by the pool next to husband Gav Gill and enjoying newlywed nights in the romantic honeymoon suite, the pair spent two weeks tip-toeing around each other and the 30 family and friends who’d joined them.
Because, just six weeks before their lavish beach wedding costing thousands, Lucy had called the whole thing off.
Overwhelmed with her job as a trainee police officer, Lucy reassesed her entire life and decided things needed to change… including the wedding to fiance Gav.
“I kept thinking about what we were doing, and I knew it wasn’t right,” she says. “Everything was getting on top of me, and I knew getting married wasn’t the best thing to be doing.”
With too little time to cancel their nuptials, the pair decided to go on the “holiday” anyway, even spending an awkward few nights in the honeymoon suite.
“Thankfully we’d warned the hotel not to scatter any rose petals on the bed or anything,” Lucy says. “But the room was gorgeous and you could see how romantic it should’ve been. Not awkward like it was.”
What’s the best love story you’ve ever heard? Let us know in the comment section
Afterwards, the couple went their separate ways, thinking that was that.
But fate had other ideas and, two years later, again on the other side of the world, they were reunited and fell in love all over again.
“It was the last thing I ever expected,” she laughs.
Lucy is used to dealing with the unexpected in her police job and is featured in new TV show Women on the Force. But the 29-year-old admits she never saw a reconciliation with Gav, now 30, on the cards.
Their love story had started so well. “We’d been together for about two-and-a-half years when we bought a house in 2011,” she says. “We both had a love of travel, always took month-long holidays to places like India, Canada and Thailand.”
For those few weeks, it was a paradise away from the stresses of work and everyday life. “Gav had his own haulage firm, which involved long hours, and I was making a career in the police force,” she says.
In 2014 she joined North Yorkshire Police as a Police Community Support Officer.
“I loved it, being part of the community, making a real difference to peoples’ lives,” she says. And on on a New Year holiday that same year, her love life took a huge turn too.
“Gav and I were in Goa, as my mum Claire was over there travelling. It was stunning, amazing beaches, clear blue seas, a world away from Yorkshire.”
On New Year’s Eve, Lucy went to put on one of her rings. “It wasn’t there and when I asked Mum, she said she wanted to borrow it and wouldn’t give it back,” she smiles. “So I had an idea something was up!”
While the couple had been away, Gav had decided to propose – without a ring though, he’d had to “borrow” one of Lucy’s.
And when she went onto the beach, romantic Gav had made a love heart out of candles in the sand and as fireworks exploded in the sky, he went down on one knee.
“Of course I said yes,” she says.
Back home, the couple didn’t start planning the wedding straight away – Lucy wanted to further her career first. She’d always wanted to become a PC eventually, and in 2016, she quit as a PCSO, and started her training to become a police officer for West Yorkshire Police.
“I really thought it was going to be just what I wanted to do,” she says. But the reality was very different.
“The shift pattern was much more difficult than I imagined,” she says. “Gav and I became like ships in the night, barely seeing each other. And the work was very demanding and often very difficult and distressing.”
Although she knows that’s the nature of the job, Lucy says it became increasingly difficult to deal with.
“I wanted to talk about some of the things I dealt with, but it was hard,” she says. “Gav understandably didn’t always understand or appreciate it, so I’d play things down. And I was working with all new colleagues, so didn’t have anyone there I felt I could talk to.”
And she says the job wasn’t everything she expected. “For me, being a PCSO, I’d loved being part of a community, seeing a job through properly to the end. It gave me a real sense of satisfaction that I’d helped achieved something,” she says. “But this, I felt like it was always rushing from one job to another, never quite seeing a result or things through.”
Despite her struggles, Lucy decided not to confide in Gav. “He had a stressful job too and I didn’t want to burden him,” she says. And she hoped that planning their wedding might be something positive to focus on.
“Because we loved travelling, we wanted to get married abroad,” she says. “So we booked a dream wedding and holiday in Bali for January 2018. We invited about 30 family and friends, and it was going to be amazing. The hotel was on the beach, and we booked the honeymoon suite for after the wedding.”
She bought her dress, a fishtail style with a sweetheart neckline, as the weeks drew closer to the wedding. But the demands of the jobs were still mounting, with Lucy becoming more disillusioned every day.
And in October 2017, she finally cracked. “I was doing a driving course and suddenly I just knew I couldn’t do it anymore,” she says. Sitting in the police car, she knew this wasn’t the job for her.
“I burst out crying and said I hated it,” she says. Her sergeant sent her home, thinking she might just need a break, but Lucy never went back.
She started doing an admin job in an office, but the decision made her look at other areas of her life – like her relationship with Gav.
“We’d not had any big falling out, but we were more like friends,” she says. And it as while she was on her hen do that Lucy realised it was something else she couldn’t continue to lie about.
So back home, she and Gav sat down to talk about their future – and they both came to the agreement that getting married wasn’t the right thing to do.
“But the wedding was just six weeks away now,” she says. “We and so many others had paid so much money to go to Bali.” So the couple decided to go anyway!
“It was a bit awkward to say the least,” she smiles. “Especially when we had the honeymoon suite after what should’ve been the wedding. Me and Gav were tiptoeing around each other in this beautiful room.”
The Mirror’s newsletter brings you the latest news, exciting showbiz and TV stories, sport updates and essential political information.
The newsletter is emailed out first thing every morning, at 12noon and every evening.
Never miss a moment by signing up to our newsletter here.
Back home, the couple limped along for a few months, even going to see friends in Canada. “But we kind of realised that it was only when we were away from reality things seemed brighter,” she says.
So Gav moved out of the house and they went their separate ways.
With time to think about things more clearly, Lucy realised that a career in the police was still something she wanted, but back as a PCSO. “I knew I could make a difference, but back in my original role,” she says. She joined North Yorkshire Police as a PCSO in October 2019.
As soon as she slipped her uniform back on, she knew she’d made the right decision and three months later, in January 2020, she and her mum went to Thailand for a month.
“There were so many memories of Gav there,” she says. “All the beaches we’d visited, and it got me thinking about him a lot. I knew that my unhappiness with the job had to have played a part in our split.” looking him up on social media, she was stunned to see he was also in Thailand!
“I was in Krabi and I saw on social media that Gav was in Thailand too,” Lucy says. “I couldn’t believe it.
“We’d barely since each other since we’d called off the wedding. We’d been to Thailand together before and seeing all the beaches and temples we’d visited together had brought back so many happy memories. So I’d contacted him and asked if he’d wanted to meet me. Thankfully he’d said yes!”
Gav agreed and travelled to meet Lucy at the hostel she was staying in. “And he never left,” she adds. “We did the rest of our travelling together, and talked about everything that had happened. Although we were in this beautiful country, where everything always seemed brighter, I knew I didn’t want to lose Gav again.”
Back home, by the following March Gav had moved back into the house. And now, the couple couldn’t be happier.
“We talk more and because I’m happier in my job, I’m happier at home,” she says.
But marriage is off the cards for now. “I think that ship has sailed,” she smiles. “But who knows, life, as we know, has a funny way of turning out.”
- Women on the Force starts weekly from today (Thursday, April 8) at 8pm on W.