Gay and lesbian couples have started
marrying in Scotland.
A gay marriage law approved in February
by the Scottish Parliament took effect earlier this month, but a
15-day waiting period meant the first weddings didn't take place
until December 31, known in Scotland as the Hogmanay. Couples in
existing civil partnerships were able to convert their unions into
marriages at the law's start. More than 250 couples have already
According to the Guardian,
Joe Schofield and Malcolm Brown, both 42, and Susan Douglas-Scott,
54, and Gerrie Douglas-Scott, 59, were the first to marry on Hogmanay
at the stroke of midnight. Both ceremonies took place in Glasgow.
“We are very proud to be one of the
first couples in Scotland to be able to officially call ourselves
husband and husband,” Schofield
and Brown said in a statement.
“This is an amazing chapter in
Scotland's history which we are all witnessing and can be proud of.”
“Scotland is leading the way in
fairness and equality for all, and we would like to thank all those
who campaigned so tirelessly for this change,” they added.
The Douglas-Scotts have been together
18 years and raised five children. They entered a civil partnership
Scotland's two largest churches, the
Catholic Church and the Church of Scotland, opposed passage of the
law. But other religious groups, including Quakers, Buddhists and
the Pagan Federation, supported passage.
Scotland introduced civil partnerships
for gay couples in 2005.