The odd couple! Former probation worker falls for petty criminal – who has H.M.P tattooed across his forehead
Talk about the odd couple – former probation worker Emma Pearce has met her own Prince Charming – a petty criminal who had H.M.P tattooed across his FOREHEAD.
Determined Emma Pearce, 32, from Saint Austell, Cornwall, first met homeless convict, Allan Blake, 26, in 2011 after eying each other up in their local pub.
She quickly fell in love with Allan and despite having a H.M.P. (Her Majesty’s Prison) tattoo on his forehead and 23 minor convictions and 32 offences, she was determined to transform his life.
Emma, who gave up her job as a probation worker to work as a part-time model, moved Allan into her flat, helped him to change his ways and encouraged him to remove his offensive tattoo – that was preventing him from getting a job.
After his transformation was complete last year, Allan proposed and now the happy couple are set to get married.
Emma said: “At first I thought Allan was a trouble maker and a bit of a rogue, but after I spoke to him I knew there was a beautiful decent person beneath who just needed to be loved.
“When I saw the H.M.P. tattoo on his forehead I knew he must’ve been a bit of a bad boy but I really fancied him and soon fell in love.
“When I got to know him I realised he wasn’t as bad as people said he was at all and was in fact really sweet he would walk two miles in the rain to come and see me.
“Alan had been to jail ten times all for minor offences but that didn’t stop me as I knew there was a loving person inside who just needed some guidance.
“I would have never judged Allan unless he was a rapist or a murderer I know that everybody makes mistakes but it’s who they become after which is most important.
“He’s had a difficult life during his childhood and was put into a children’s home when he was young and from there his life went off the rails.
“He went on to commit offences including criminal damage and affray, but I could see past the big front he had been putting on for so many years.
“I knew from working at the probation office that people make mistakes and Allan is the perfect example of that, he’s perfect now in my eyes.”
Allan had just been released from prison for a series of petty crimes when he first met Emma in October 2011 in their local pub, when he was sleeping rough – and soon the pair started dating in December after a series of movie dates at her house.
The couple then moved in together and Emma got to work on turning his life around to help him overcome problems with alcohol and self-harm.
Emma said: “We got talking after that and I fell for him, I wanted to help because I could see there was a wonderful person beneath.
“Allan was really deep and sensitive and I found that very attractive.
“Before people would think he was angry and scary, partly because of his tattoo but I knew there was a lot more to him.”
Emma helped Allan to overcome his problems and encouraged him to get rid of the Her Majesty’s Prison tattoo from his forehead.
Despite having five sessions of laser surgery though the tattoo wouldn’t come off so he drastically opted to have the inked skin cut from his forehead.
With the tattoo removed he managed to get a job within just a few weeks as a carpet fitter and decorator.
Allan said: “The tattoo was a stupid drunken mistake that I heavily regretted and was drinking heavily to avoid facing that I was an alcoholic.
“I’d barely look in the mirror but after the surgery I was able to get a job and move on with my life.
“Before people would see the hideous tattoo and fear me, but for Emma it didn’t bother her.
“I now look in the mirror and feel confident as I look more attractive and feel like I can be friendly rather than having to avoid people.
“I love Emma through and through, I know that if she hadn’t changed my life I would probably be dead by now.”
Last year Allan encouraged Emma to apply for a beauty pageant to encourage her to be more confident and show off her looks.
In March last year Emma, who has won more than four titles in the beauty pageant world, in Miss UK Dreams she won a prize her age group title as well as an award for her generous charity work.
After accepting her coveted titles, Allan who suffered from anxiety and was unable to speak in public then stood up to ask Emma to marry him.
The engaged couple are looking to plan their wedding for 2018.
Emma said: “I would’ve never had the confidence to do a pageant before Allan, now I love them.
“I even have my own Facebook page to update my fans on my modelling progress: Emma Pearce – Model & Beauty Queen.
“For Allan to stand up in front of a crowd and propose was such a moving moment it really made me realise how much he loves me.
“Before he could never stand up in front of people and talk, let alone ask me to marry him.
“Allan’s completely changed his life for me and I’m so glad I took the chance on him all that time ago, it’s wonderful to see the person he’s become.
“Some people say we are like the real life Lady and the Tramp.
“But I don’t care what people think or say about us, we have each other and that’s all that matters.”