A whirlwind romance that started at a New Year’s Eve party means Bradford is about to get its first ‘ladyboy wedding’.
Pre-op Kate Ainsworth, 39, and Sally Adams, 46, who were born as men but live as women, said the chance meeting was love at first sight.
Within a week, Miss Adams had popped the question, Miss Ainsworth had said yes and the big day fixed for the day after Valentine’s Day – this year!
The love-struck pair, who said they knew as six and seven-year-olds that they were trapped in the wrong sex bodies, have chosen their gowns – one white and one red, the registrar is booked to conduct the civil partnership at Bradford’s Great Victoria Hotel and the three transgender bridesmaids selected.
Although civil partnerships have been allowed since 2005, it will be the first time two men sex-changing into women have got hitched.
Miss Ainsworth, who left Bradford in 2007 to live in Thailand until returning three years ago, has been having female hormone treatment and will finally have the reassignment surgery she has longed for in three months.
However, her partner, originally from Doncaster and a joiner by profession, still has two years to wait before her sex-swap is complete.
“It’s hard for a gender person to date. I never thought I would find anyone but we’ve found each other. We hit it off straight away and just knew this was it – the meeting we’d both dreamed of but never thought would actually happen,” said Miss Ainsworth, who is studying at Bradford College.
And she added: “We are unique. This will be Bradford’s first ever ladyboy wedding. We’re excited and we are stating a point that as a gender we are not going away.
“I left Yorkshire for Thailand at the time because it was easier for me to be accepted out there but times are changing in Bradford now and we feel accepted for who we are. It's a good feeling – we are Yorkshire girls and proud of it.”
The couple, who live together in Little Germany and changed their names by deed-poll, will eventually apply as women to have their civil partnership recognised as a marriage once new same-sex wedding laws come in this year.
March 29 is the first day same-sex unions can officially be conducted and recognised as marriages – although so far there have been no inquiries at Bradford Register office.