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Gillingham couple Anna-Marie Broom and Jordan Burford face hate campaign after asking for cash to help with wedding plans


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A Medway couple on benefits have come under fire after asking for the government to help fund their plans to get married.

Anna-Marie Broom, 33, and Jordan Burford, 39, from Richmond Road in Gillingham, say they now fear abuse for their controversial remarks.

It comes after their story - listing an extravagant wedding wish list, including champagne, a five-tier cake, a Jordan-style carriage, designer shoes and a honeymoon in Mexico - appeared in Closer magazine.

Anna-Marie Broom and Jordan Burford
Anna-Marie Broom and Jordan Burford

The couple, who say they have medical conditions that prevent them from working, have said they would settle for a cheaper wedding - if the government contributed - say £900 - to their nuptials.

They said they believed that every couple has a fundamental "human right" to get married, and called for the taxpayer to foot part of the bill.

But now they have come under fire for expecting any public cash towards their big day.

On this website RedQueen87 said: "I earn minimum wage and work full time in a school.

"I get less a month than these and yet i would never scrounge the money off the government! That money is there for people who really need it!"

Age of Aquarius agreed: "Miss Broom says she will pay back the five or six hundred pounds that she's suggested BOOT (Bank of Other Taxpayers) should lend them, but how will they do that when they can't appear to save from their modest incomes?

"If you can't pay for it then go without - simples - and a statutory declaration for change of name would be a lot cheaper."

Since the magazine article was published Anna-Marie has been approached by strangers in the street who accuse the couple of being “money-grabbers”.

Closer said the couple were after a Jordan-style carrriage and an eleborate wedding celebration
Closer said the couple were after a Jordan-style carrriage and an eleborate wedding celebration

Miss Broom said about the story: “No one came to interview me, it was all over the phone and they were lovely, encouraging me to talk about my health and hopes, but they have simply used it as ammunition against me.”

She says the article has left her tearful, adding: “It makes me out to be a horrible person and those who know me know that I’m not.

"I can’t wait to be Mrs Burford, I believe in marriage, we both do, but on benefits we have little savings.

"I suggested the Government might help us with five to six hundred pounds, which I would pay back.”

Miss Broom, who admits not having had a job since she was 18, also denies the magazine’s claims that she believed it was her “basic human right” to have her dream wedding paid for.

“I’d be quite happy to get married at a registry office and walk to the service. I want to marry Anna-Marie; she provides the care I need” - Jordan Burford

Miss Broom said: “My words were: I believe it is every woman’s right to marry.”

The couple say they now hope to save for a modest, local marriage ceremony within the next 12 months, as Miss Broom’s mother has cancer.

Partner Jordan Burford, who has epilepsy, said: “I’d be quite happy to get married at a registry office and walk to the service. I want to marry Anna-Marie; she provides the care I need.”

The couple say they were offered £200 for their story, which will go towards their marriage fund when they receive it.

Miss Broom’s brother Richard, 34, from Speedwell Close in Gillingham, who is dating 61-year-old mum of seven Sandra Gallaher, recently featured in the Channel 5 programme Can’t Work, Won’t Work.

The couple also plan to marry.

A spokesperson for Closer magazine said: “Anna-Marie Broom willingly told us her story, her interview was recorded and when the finished article was read back to her prior to publication, she did not raise any concerns with the content.”

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