SARA CROSS AND DANIEL NEEDLE­MAN

The Jewish Chronicle - - Community Life -

SARA GREW up in Wood­ford Green, Es­sex, and Daniel grew up in nearby Gants Hill but moved to Ari­zona when he was 19. Sara is a sec­re­tary with a West End law firm and Daniel works as a sys­tems ad­min­is­tra­tor for an in­sur­ance bro­ker in the City. He stud­ied in the USA and has been work­ing in IT since 2001 when he re­turned to Eng­land. They live in Loughton, Es­sex.

HOWTHEY MET

“We met through Sara’s cousin Adam, who is one of my best friends,” ex­plains Daniel. “She some­times said ‘hello’ if I was with Adam at a lo­cal pub and she would also oc­ca­sion­ally come over to the flat that Adam and I owned. Things only moved for­ward when Sara came over one night af­ter the dou­ble-whammy of be­ing made re­dun­dant and split­ting up with her boyfriend. I thought I should prob­a­bly leave her alone, but Sara got my email ad­dress from her cousin. We started to email each other, which soon turned into phone calls, which soon turned into dat­ing.”

THE PRO­POSAL

“Sara and I got en­gaged in Au­gust 2005. I pro­posed at her aunt and un­cle’s house on a Satur­day af­ter­noon at tea in front of some of her fam­ily. Un­for­tu­nately, it wasn’t as ro­man­tic as I would have liked but it was a sur­prise for Sara. Orig­i­nally, I had an evening planned at Jamie Oliver’s restau­rant. Sara had asked ev­ery­one she and I knew if I had de­cided on a date to pro­pose. She struck gold when one of my mates told her when and I was go­ing to do it. I didn’t want her to be ex­pect­ing it, so I had to can­cel the plans I had been mak­ing for four months.”

THE WED­DING

“We were mar­ried at Bee­hive Lane Syn­a­gogue, Il­ford, fol­lowed by a re­cep­tion at Stock Brook Manor,” says Daniel. “The first venue we booked was Orsett Hall in Es­sex, but two weeks be­fore the wed­ding it burned down. The Es­sex fire-brigade web­site had real-time up­dates of the fire with pic­tures. We watched as 18 months of plan­ning burned to the ground. We’d watched Wed­dings From Hell a few times and we couldn’t be­lieve our wed­ding was an ideal can­di­date for the pro­gramme. There were lots of tears. But the man­age­ment at Orsett Hall were won­der­ful. They man­aged to re­ar­range our re­cep­tion at Stock Brook Manor, which was beau­ti­ful and the staff bent over back­wards to ac­com­mo­date us and all our de­mands. What could have been a mem­o­rable wed­ding for all the wrong rea­sons ended up be­ing a mem­o­rable wed­ding for all the right rea­sons and a won­der­ful day. We can cer­tainly look back on ev­ery­thing and laugh about it now.”

THE HON­EY­MOON

“We went to the San­dals Re­sort on St Lu­cia. We stayed for 10 nights and we couldn’t have asked for a bet­ter way to spend our hon­ey­moon. We took a he­li­copter ride, walked into a vol­cano, snorkelled in coral reefs, went dol­phin- and whale-watch­ing, and en­joyed a can­dlelit din­ner on the beach.”

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