Wednesday, February 29, 2012 11:13 PM
Some ladies waste a lifetime waiting for Prince Charming to propose with rose petals and diamonds.
But Lisa Maxwell has bitten the bullet by popping the question to her partner Paul Jessup.
The Bill star, who played DI Samantha Nixon in the ITV1 drama between 2002 and 2009, honoured the leap year tradition when every fours years the female is meant to get down on one knee.
Brave! Lisa Maxwell proposed to Paul Jessup last night, revealing she popped the question in her 'jimjmas'
The television presenter, 48, has never married and so it will be her first time down the aisle.
However, it's about time she says 'I do', with Lisa and sculptor Paul having been together since 1997.
The couple have one child together, their daughter Beau, 12, who was born in October 1999.
A nervous looking Lisa was egged on by co-hosts Andrea McLean, Carol McGiffin and Jane McDonald as she punched the air in victory after revealing the news in front of the ITV1 cameras.
Lisa actually proposed last night in the privacy of their own home, while still wearing her pyjamas.
Relocating to the Cotswolds: Lisa and Paul have just moved into a new house
She said: 'It's something we've talked about, but we haven't really had a proposal. And I thought I'd say to him, once and for all, 'Will you marry me?' And he said, 'Of course I will Nobby!'"
The petite blonde continued: 'Unfortunately I wanted to try and get a picture of the moment I proposed, but I was in my jimjams and we were in bed. Well I wasn't even in my jimjams!'
Lisa gushed: 'I love him, I want to spend the rest of my life with him. If you're watching sweetheart - you mean the world to me and I'm so happy. I didn't realise I would be, but there you go.'
Explaining the build up to her proposal, Lisa said: 'For the last couple of weeks I've been joking with Paul (about February 29)... And he was like, "Yeah, very funny. Haha," and just ignored it.
Long term partners: Lisa and Paul have been together for 15 years, having daughter Beau in October 1999
'I've been sniffing around him for a couple of weeks, as you do. So yesterday, and he knew I was thinking of maybe doing something, and maybe not doing something, because things are fantastic in our relationship. Fifteen years in June, we've been there, seen it, done it.
'We've got a beautiful daughter. There are no surprises. We've just moved to the Cotswolds and we've bought a house and we've done it up, and it will be the last house we ever live in.
'So we kind of know where our lives are going and there seemed very little reason to change that.
'But the fact that we knew where our lives were going, I was thinking "Well, what's the big surprise? The only thing that we don't have is marriage." So yesterday, I proposed to Paul.
'We were in bed at the time and I'd spent all day trying to get it right and all day trying to be a really lovely girlfriend because you don't want to have a row the day you're going to ask that big question.'
Egging her on: Lisa was surrounded by co-hosts Andrea McLean, Carol McGiffin and Jane McDonald