Holly and Cian enjoy romantic London break
THE budding romance between Miss Ireland Holly Carpenter and Irish rugby star Cian Healy goes from strength to strength.
Although keen to keep their relationship on the down-low, the pair were snapped coming back from a romantic trip to London.
The Herald can reveal the couple met at a protest over the Clontarf flood wall before Christmas.
Holly (20) had been keeping tight-lipped about her new beau up to now, but has confirmed they are very much together.
"We met before Christmas but we got together properly after New Year's," she admitted.
"Rugby is pretty new to me. I've just watched the games on TV but I'd like to go see one."
The Raheny beauty was first snapped with the sports star and part-time DJ at a protest march at Clontarf rugby club to show their opposition to Dublin City Council's flood defence plans in December.
The pair had been asked to join stars like PJ Gallagher and Diarmuid Gavin to attend the protest.
They have since grown closer, with Cian making no secret of the fact that he thinks she is gorgeous.
Holly sent the rumour mill into overdrive after appearing on the Late Late Show last Friday to talk about being single in Ireland alongside Geraldine O'Callaghan.
But just at the end of the interview, she told Ryan Tubridy that she was actually dating someone right now. "I'm actually not single right now. I don't want him to get annoyed with me," she said.
Asked what her relationship status was, she told the Herald: "I had been single for over a year so when I was asked to go on the show, being single was definitely something I could talk about.
"But then I got really freaked out that all his mates would slag him that I said on TV that I was single when I wasn't.
"I know I wouldn't like if I was going out with someone and they said publicly that they hadn't a girlfriend.
"He watched it back on the RTE Player and just thought it was funny and typical of me to be that dorky. It's still early days between us but we've been seeing each other for a few weeks now."
But now that the romance is finally out in the open, Holly says her biggest fear is being branded a WAG.
"I wouldn't like to be called that because it sounds like that's all you've achieved. I had achieved my own things before I met him."
Holly's star has gradually been in the ascent since winning the coveted crown last summer and has been featured on shows like Xpose and Ireland AM. She has been working steadily ever since and has plans to try her luck in London at some stage.