WIGANERS are among the most romantic folk in the land – and that’s official!
As the final countdown to Valentine’s Day begins, the town has been crowned one of the most loved up places in the UK, second only to Southend-on-Sea.
Technology company Postcode Anywhere came to these conclusions after analysing the volume of purchases for flowers, chocolates, lingerie, jewellery, adult gifts and fragrances, across its 9,000 ecommerce customer base in each large town and city.
And Wiganers seem to be spending more than most for the big day.
Bosses at Wigan’s British Heart Foundation shops have been encouraging residents to show their softer side by displaying heartfelt Love Notes in the shop window until February 14 as part of Heart Month.
So manager Kath Ashcroft says she’s surprised at Wigan’s romantic status after finding it hard to get many of them to write a note.
Despite this, Kath, from Up Holland, said she won’t give up on romance with her husband of 43 years.
The 61-year-old said: “It’s hard to believe that people here are romantic as everyone keeps refusing to write their Love Notes.
“But it won’t stop me from celebrating Valentine’s Day with my husband John. I have to admit he is the romantic one in the relationship, he always has been but I suppose he has lost a lot of it in being with me as I’m not romantic in the slightest.
“He once sent me a bouquet of red roses to my work place for no particular reason. We’ve even had our own song together since our first date.
“On Valentine’s we both send each other cards and we’ll be going out for a meal or John will cook.”
Enid Jones, 63, of Standish believes romance is key to a good relationship.
She said: “I don’t think it should matter what age you are, everybody needs a little bit of romance in their lives.
“I will definitely be celebrating Valentine’s Day with my other half, Bill. He has always been such a romantic with holding open doors for me and mending things in the house for me which is broken.
“For me, it’s the little things which are important to keep the romance alive.”
Busker Zackery Carpenter of Ince describes himself as a romantic but is still surprised at the town’s lofty position in the romance stakes.
The 19-year-old says he thought romance was largely the preserve of past generations.
He said: “From what I’ve seen, it’s very uncommon for Wiganers to be romantic, but I could be wrong.
“I just think people these days aren’t as romantic as in previous generations purely because of the way they’ve been brought up, not many are interested in romance.
“The most romantic thing I have ever done is leave a dress and shoes on an ex’s bed with a note saying I would be taking her out later that evening. It was my birthday as well.
“Unfortunately I won’t be spoiling anybody this Valentine’s weekend, but I will be treating loved up couples to a love song collection at Casa De Cuba on February 14.”
Town centre councillor George Davies and town centre manager Mike Matthews said they will be keeping romance alive this February.
Coun Davies said: “I’m all for Valentine’s Day, I think it’s important to have a special day dedicated to showing that special someone that you care.
“It’s all about respecting each other, not neglecting the special people who you love and remaining positive even if there’s so many reasons not to be.”
Mr Matthews added: “Romance is for free, so is shouldn’t stop anybody from showing they care.
“Some old fashioned values have gone out of style and it would be good to start bringing them back.”