On Thursday evening I hosted the first civic reception for LGBT people in Bootle Town Hall. Members of Embrace- which is a network for all Lesbian, Gay or Bisexual (LGB) people who live, work or socialise in Sefton-attended including their Co-Chairs Dr Mike Homfray and Rach O’Brien. They were joined by Queer Notions a voluntary group that offers support, advice and information on mental health matters. I was particularly keen to host this reception as it marks an important stage in a journey from exclusion to full acceptance.
The Town Hall is a venue for marriages and across England and Wales we have seen over 5000 same sex weddings celebrated since the passing of the Equal Marriage Legislation. Early this year I was privileged to open the General Assembly of the United Reform Church (URC) when they became the first mainstream Christian church in the UK to empower its local churches to conduct same-sex marriages.