Gay marriage to be legalised in England, Wales
Gay marriage is set to be legalised in England and Wales after peers gave the Same Sex Couples Bill an unopposed third reading in the House of Lords.
The bill now goes back to the Commons for MPs to consider changes made to it in the Upper House. But with debate limited to just those government amendments, the bill is certain to become law.
In an emotional speech after the bill was passed, openly gay Labour peer Lord Alli gave thanks and declared: "My life and many others will be better today than it was yesterday." Liberal Democrat QC, Lord Lester of Herne Hill, said it would have been "inconceivable" for the lords to have approved such legislation 20 years ago. "It would have been fairly impossible 15 years ago," he said.
Under the bill, religious organisations are protected from being compelled to conduct gay marriages. (© Independent News Service)