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August 21, 2014

Girls are getting married quicker than the boys, with a 56%-44% split between gay and lesbian couples

Official figures have revealed how many same-sex marriages have taken place in the UK.

A total of 1,409 marriages have taken place from 29 March, the first day gay couples could legally get married in England and Wales, and 30 June.

Of these, 56% were female couples (796 marriages) and 44% were male (613).

When the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2014 was introduced in England and Wales, it triggered a rush of couples wanting to be among the first tie the knot.

August 13, 2014

Two men meet moments before their execution. A love story between two women across decades and states. A zebra - all of these and more in the running for the Iris Prize

A late night search for Viagra by two aging strangers during a one night stand.

A military exercise in the woods where two soldiers cover each other’s faces in camouflage paint, and learn more about each other.

A lesbian couple argue during a hurricane.

A zebra runs into a tree.

These are just a few of the films wanting to be named the winner of the Iris Prize, the coveted award given to the world’s best LGBT film short.

July 25, 2014

Conservative ministers have agreed to rewrite rules for England and Wales gay couples seeking to convert their civil partnerships into a marriage

Gay couples in England and Wales will be able to convert their civil partnership into a marriage in a ‘ceremony with heart’.

From 10 December, thousands of couples already in civil partnerships will be allowed to convert their unions into marriage.

But according to the proposals, they would have only had to pick up a ‘certificate of conversion’ – a piece of paper with very little romance.

As no witnesses would be required, the guidance to councils suggested no family or friends would be able to end and it would not be an official ceremony.

July 24, 2014

The Quakers church in the UK are concerned that same-sex couples who are converting their civil partnerships to marriage will not have the option of doing that in a church

The Quakers, also known as the Religious Society of Friends in Britain, have gone public with their concern that same-sex couples who are converting their civil partnerships to marriages in England and Wales will only be able to do that via register offices and not by a church wedding.

Churches in the UK register the marriages they perform with the government and the Quakers want to be able to perform their members’ same-sex marriages just as they do for opposite-sex Quaker couples.

July 7, 2014

Even though the UK religious organization already blesses civil partnerships, United Reformed Church members might have to wait years until they can get married in a church

Even though the majority of the United Reformed Church supports holding same-sex weddings, but the ban will stay in place.

One of the largest Churches in the UK, its General Assembly met in Cardiff at the weekend to discuss whether they would allow gay marriage.

Under the new gay marriage law in England and Wales, religious organizations must ‘opt in’ to offer weddings to gay couples. The Church of England and Church in Wales are automatically banned under the legislation.

July 1, 2014

Critically acclaimed, the film has been compared to British classics like Billy Elliot and The Full Monty

One of the most eagerly awaited British films of the year has released its first trailer.

Pride tells the unlikely but true story about a group of lesbian and gay activists who join forces with a small mining community in Wales in 1984.

When the National Union of Mineworkers are on strike, the activists decide to go straight to the miners to strike up an unlikely partnership.

With the two sides fighting for the same cause, the two communities that Margaret Thatcher’s government tried to suppress, they become far stronger.

June 28, 2014

Sir Ian McKellen tells Gay Star News events like this prove the future is safe for generations of LGBTI people to come

Defiant against torrential rain and recent homophobic attacks, London has put on one of the biggest and best Gay Prides in years.

With an estimated half a million LGBTI people and their allies braving the summer downpour, the UK capital marched to fight for freedom today (28 June).

The British capital is celebrating a few months after the first gay couples have got married in England and Wales, with Scotland not too far behind.

June 27, 2014

Jersey Evangelical Church, in a leaked letter, same-sex couples already have civil partnerships and a ‘small minority’ should not be allowed to change the definition of marriage

A Jersey group claiming to represent a quarter of Jersey churches says gay couples shouldn’t be able to get married.

In a leaked draft letter, the Jersey Evangelical Alliance has asked church members to oppose marriage equality ahead of a debate on 1 July.

While England and Wales already has same-sex marriage, and Scotland gay couples will be able to get married by the end of the year, the British crown dependencies Jersey and Guernsey do not yet allow it.

June 26, 2014

2014's theme for Pride In London is #FreedomTo, celebrating the new-found rights and protections given to us this year

Three months ago, gay couples in England and Wales were allowed to walk down the aisle and get married.

But while LGBTI Londoners may have more rights than ever, this is not the time to get lazy.

After all, reports of homophobic crime are up since last year.

In the few weeks alone, a 23-year-old gay man was sprayed with ammonia outside a nightclub in Vauxhall.

June 26, 2014

Government has finally announced the date that gay couples in civil partnerships will be allowed to convert them into marriage

Gay couples will still be able to enter into civil partnerships in the UK, but straight couples are still banned from the legal union.

And following a consultation, the UK government has finally announced the date couples in civil partnerships are able to convert their unions into marriage.

That date is 10 December 2014.

More than 120,000 people have entered into a civil partnership since it was made law in 2004.

June 22, 2014

UK priest Jeremy Pemberton has had some of his duties as a priest revoked by bishops because he is in a same-sex marriage with another man

A UK Anglican priest has had some of his authority as a clergyman stripped away, after bishops learned he is married to another man.

Jeremy Pemberton is an openly gay priest who was one of the first members of the clergy to enter into a same-sex marriage in April of this year, a month after gay marriage was legalized in England and Wales.

May 22, 2014

The international Iris film festival is seeking judges aged 14 to 17 to join its dedicated youth jury in Cardiff, Wales

Young film lovers in the UK are being invited to judge a prestigious international LGBTI film festival.

The Iris Prize in Cardiff, Wales features short and feature films with gay, lesbian, bi, trans and more themes.

Now its Iris Prize Youth Jury 2014 will give 10 young people the chance to attend private screenings before choosing from some of the best short films from the last 12 months.

And the judges will get to present their award at a gala dinner with celebrities and film industry insiders.

May 8, 2014

Sir Elton John and David Furnish could be the first gay couple to recieve a shield representing their relationship and family dynasty

British gay married couples are now able to create their own coat of arms for the first time in history.

For centuries, couples in the upper classes of British society have been designing a shared shield that combine the two families in one heraldic symbol.

And now couples in England and Wales can get married, the College of Arms has announced they have finally changed their archaic rules.

The College said they will aim to ‘replicate as closely as possible the heraldic practice for married couples of different sex.’

May 6, 2014

Has the 'sinister monk' of Cambridge struck again? New pamphlet claims gay marriage will to the legalization of pedophilia and describes homosexuality as a 'dangerous temptation rather than a healthy orientation'

UK police are investigating a homophobic leaflet that describes being gay are 'inspired by the devil' and 'belong to the culture of death'.

A Cambridgeshire Police spokesman has said they are looking into the pamphlets entitled ‘Homosexualism’.

Believed to be a form of ‘protest’ against same-sex marriage in England and Wales, they warn giving gay couples rights will lead to the legalization of pedophilia.

April 29, 2014

Gay rights groups are disappointed by the defeat, criticizing one of the party's usage of a petition of concern to block the motion

Hopes for gay marriage in Northern Ireland were dashed after a motion was defeated in the legislative assembly today (29 April).

Members of the Legislative Assembly debated a move to introduce same-sex marriage, as adopted in England, Wales and Scotland.

The Sinn Féin motion said religious institutions would have the choice to conduct same-sex marriages, but that was not enough.

43 MLAs voted in favor of same-sex marriage, with 50 voted against.

April 28, 2014

Conservative leader reportedly believes giving straight couples civil partnerships would ‘undermine the sanctity of marriage’

UK Prime Minister David Cameron is opposed to giving straight couples the same equal rights as gays have when it comes to legal unions.

The Conservative leader will reportedly veto proposals to give straight couples the right to enter into civil partnerships.

It is alleged he believes civil partnerships for straight couples would ‘undermine the sanctity of marriage’ and possibly ‘alienate traditional Tory voters’.

April 23, 2014

Dr Barry Morgan said many religious leaders are using the Bible to fight against LGBTI equality, suggesting there is no single Christian viewpoint on gay relationships

Gay couples who want to get married should be patient if they want the blessing of the Church in Wales, its archbishop has said today (23 April).

The first same-sex weddings in England and Wales took place on 29 March with many gay couples able to say they were one of the first to be officially married.

In the legislation passed by parliament, the Church of England and the Church in Wales was expressly banned from blessing same-sex marriages.

Other religious organizations had the power to ‘opt-in’ if they wished.

April 23, 2014

Gay rights activist says: ‘Oh look. The process of forgetting what all the fuss was about RE: same-sex marriage has begun'

Same-sex marriage is now a reality in England and Wales, and it appears the first legal unions a little less than a month ago has drastically changed people’s views.

A majority of Conservative and UKIP supporters, traditionally known as the ‘homophobic’ parties, are now in favor of same-sex marriage.

A study found 61% of Tories and 54% of UKIP supporters said they would agree same-sex couples deserve to have legal unions.

April 16, 2014

Northern Ireland politicians are making a third bid to legalize same-sex marriage, following England, Wales and Scotland

The Northern Ireland Assembly is to debate giving gay and lesbian couples the right to marry.

It is the only nation in the UK to have not already passed same-sex marriage.

But now six Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLAs) have filed a motion calling for marriage equality.

The private members motion is due to be debated on 29 April.

The motion notes that England, Wales and Scotland have ‘moved forward with equal marriage rights for same-sex couples’.

April 14, 2014

Dwayne Morgan, the pastor who officiated the wedding, believes 'God blesses the love of two people no matter what their gender'

A couple have married in what is believed to be the UK’s first gay wedding in a church.

Jan Tipper and Barb Burden were married at the Metropolitan Community Church in Bournemouth yesterday (13 April)

On 29 March, same-sex couples in England and Wales were finally allowed to walk down the aisle and marry officially.

Dwayne Morgan, who officiated the wedding, said he decided to officiate the wedding because he believes ‘God blesses the love of two people no matter what their gender.’

April 11, 2014

Bible fundamentalist takes on the gays of Soho in the name of Christ

A UK preacher is so angry gay people have made Soho their home, he is running as an independent candidate in the upcoming election.

Andrew Murray, a minister for the Hope Community Church, declared in March he wants to be a councillor ‘to better represent the people of Soho’, a gay area in London.

In his online posts, the church leader has ranted about same-sex marriage in England and Wales.

‘We simply believe that the Bible’s teaching about creation sets God’s pattern for human relationships,' he said.

April 9, 2014

Culture Secretary resigns from her post after funding a home for her parents at taxpayers' expense

Conservative politician Maria Miller, who saw through same-same sex marriage in England and Wales, has resigned as culture secretary.

Following a row over her expenses, Downing Street said they had recieved a resignation letter from the member of parliament (MP) today (9 April).

David Cameron said while he was sorry to get the letter, he accepted her decision.

A huge outrage followed after Miller was cleared of funding a home for her parents at taxpayers' expense.

April 7, 2014

Jeremy Hunt, the Northern Ireland Health Secretary, has previously claimed banning blood is needed to ensure public safety

Northern Ireland is being called on to defend its ban against gay men giving blood.

Jeremy Hunt, the Northern Ireland Health Secretary, has previously claimed banning 'gay blood' is needed to ensure public safety.

He has begun a legal appeal after a judge ruled it was up to him if gay men could donate blood in NI. A ban, which was enforced during the 1980s, 90s and 00s, was lifted in England, Scotland and Wales in 2011.

New rules allow gay and bisexual men to donate blood as long as their last sexual contact with another man was more than a year ago.

April 3, 2014

Bishop’s conference publicly rejected the proposition of MPs being denied communion for voting in favor of marriage equality

Catholic MPs will not be punished by the church for being in favor of gay marriage.

After some members of parliament in the UK supported same-sex marriage in England and Wales, the Bishop of Portsmouth Philip Egan accused them of being ‘grave sinners.’

However, yesterday (2 April) The Catholic Conference of England announced they have ‘no plans’ to side with the bishop and deny politicians Holy Communion.