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Strictly's Gorka Marquez pens heartfelt apology after missing Gemma Atkinson's birthday

Happy birthday, Gemma!

Sharnaz Shahid

Gorka Marquez has paid the sweetest tribute to his girlfriend Gemma Atkinson in honour of her 36th birthday.

Sharing a series of throwback photos on Monday, the Strictly Come Dancing star confessed he was upset he couldn't celebrate with Gemma in person due to his busy schedule with the BBC dance show and coronavirus restrictions.

"HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BABY!!" he wrote. "Sad I can't be there to celebrate with you and Mia your day like you deserve. You are the most amazing mum and girlfriend in the world! Kind, funny, humble, caring, talented, strong and I am so grateful to have you by my side.

MORE: Gemma Atkinson muses over the idea of getting married to Gorka Marquez

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WATCH: Gemma Atkinson treated to special gifts on 36th birthday

"I'm sorry I can’t give you a birthday kiss but you have my kisses forever. TE AMO. Feliz cumpleaños @glouiseatkinson [I love you, happy birthday in Spanish]."

Upon seeing the heartwarming post, birthday girl Gemma replied: "I love you!" She also shared a video of all the amazing bouquets of flowers she received as well as the birthday card her one-year-old daughter Mia gave her.

MORE: Gemma Atkinson wells up live on-air after Gorka Marquez's emotional surprise

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Gemma and Gorka met on the set of Strictly back in 2017, but the pair kept their romance under wraps until the series ended. Unusually for the show's love stories, they weren't dancing partners - Gemma was coupled with Aljaz Skorjanec and Gorka danced with Alexandra Burke.

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One of the cute photos Gorka shared on Gemma's birthday

There's no denying that two years on, the gorgeous couple are still going strong. However, in October 2019, Gemma explained to HELLO! that marriage isn't a priority for the pair, saying: "I'm not really too fussed about being Mrs Marquez and being married."

Exclusive: Gemma Atkinson on the challenges of bringing up baby Mia

READ: Gemma Atkinson reveals heartache after missing Gorka's milestone birthday

Last month, during an appearance on Steph's Packed Lunch, Gemma was put on the spot when she was asked how she'd feel if Gorka turned up to the studio and demanded they got married that very moment.

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Gemma and Gorka share little Mia together

"I don't know if I could be bothered with everything. I'd say no, not yet," she replied, adding: "I'm assuming part of the nice bit of the wedding is the build-up whereby you both plan it together - I know it will be stressful."

Gemma did admit, however, that marrying Gorka is not out of the question, saying: "I would be up for a quick wedding, you know, a local registry office, get it done, boom. But I wouldn't if he demanded it here and now, no."

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