Search

Havering MPs divided on subject of gay marriage as bill passes through Commons

15:00 06 February 2013

Dame Angela Watkinson MP

Dame Angela Watkinson MP

Archant

Parliament last night voted in favour of allowing same-sex marriages in the UK – but Havering MPs, like the House of Commons, are divided on the issue.

Hornchurch and Upminster MP Dame Angela Watkinson (Conservative), who voted in favour of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill, spoke during the debate of “the gay people who have approached me who feel the vows of commitment they are allowed to exchange in the civil partnership ceremony are not regarded with the same value as those in a marriage.”

Speaking to the Recorder after the bill’s second reading, she added: “While no heterosexual individual will suffer any harm or disadvantage, gay couples will benefit from having their lifetime commitment recognised as being of equal value. I voted for this bill as I think it was the right thing to do.

“I have gained many gay colleagues and friends over the years and know them to be good people. There is no place for prejudice or exclusion in 2013.”

But Romford MP Andrew Rosindell was one of 136 Tory MPs who opposed the bill, despite its support from the government.

“Marriage has always been between a man and a woman and once we move away from that there’s no end to where it will lead,” he told the Recorder.

“Do you mean that a man can marry more than one wife like they do in the Muslim countries? Is it right that you can marry someone in your own family?”

He added: “There’s not a church in Romford that hasn’t been in touch with me and said how much they fear being penalised for refusing to carry out a ceremony.”

The bill provides that no religious organisation can be forced to carry out a same-sex ceremony – but Mr Rosindell said he feared this could be overturned by the European Court of Human Rights.

“It’s not about equality,” he said. “Equality is already there.”

Dagenham and Rainham MP Jon Cruddas (Labour) voted in favour of the bill, but added: “For me, as a catholic, marriage is a sacrament carried out in church between a man and woman.

“There will be those in the coming debates who will and seek to force churches to perform same sex marriages. I will oppose this throughout.

“But as long as the sacrament of marriage in church between a man and woman remains protected then I accept the changes in the civic ceremonies for same sex couples.”

0 comments

Latest News Stories

Yesterday, 19:36
Flying Ryan stunt team receive a hot reception

Jousting, stunt motorcyclists and performing pooches were just some of the entertainment offerings at the first day of the Havering Show today.

Yesterday, 15:00
File photo dated 03/10/14 of a nurse giving a patient a diabetes test as there is growing evidence that a popular statin carries a particularly high risk of harmful side-effects, a doctor and campaigner has warned.

The number of people in Havering living with diabetes has decreased in the past year despite Type 2 increasing across the country.

Yesterday, 12:00
Georgie and Jazz Smedley

It’s a dream for many women to be asked if they and their daughter are sisters and for one woman that happens nearly every day.

Yesterday, 10:00
Reporter Ellena Rowlin at the body combat class

Many hunt for an exciting way to get fit and tone up that doesn’t involve a treadmill or heavy weights. Well, I’ve found it – body combat.

Most read news

News from your area

WW100

Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.

Competitions

Shop till you drop!

Home to top name brands at great prices, TK Maxx is more like a treasure hunt than a shop. Perfect for grabbing a bargain or some hidden gems, you arm yourself with a trolley and go wild.

Scones, jam and a cup of Earl Grey anyone?

Luxury boutique hotel Flemings Mayfair has recently launched The Drawing Room, London’s most stylish location for afternoon tea.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Romford Recorder e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder