First gay marriage in British Army

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A lesbian couple have become the first gay army recruits to have a civil partnership.

The Sun revealed that Privates Sonya Gould, 19, and Vanessa Haydock, 18, got married under new civil laws.

Vanessa, based at Hullavington, Wilts, told the Sun said: “It was wonderful to get married and being the first was the icing on the cake. We want to be together forever.”

Sonya, who is a tank transporter driver in Yorkshire, said she “couldn’t wait” to tie the knot when Vanessa proposed after they fell for each other while training.

The pair, both privates in the Royal Logistic Corps, married under new civil partnership laws.

Family and friends were at the registry office ceremony in Chippenham, Wilts – near the barracks in Hullavington where Vanessa serves with 9 Supply Regiment.

Both wore black trouser suits – Vanessa’s with pink trim and Sonya’s edged in white.

Sonya told how love blossomed nearly two years ago as the pair trained in Pirbright, Surrey.

Vanessa proposed marriage just two months after they started dating – but Sonya turned her down at that time as she was unsure.

Sonya said in the Sun: “”We noticed each other straight away . I wasn’t sure about my sexuality. But lesbianism is openly accepted in the Army and there’s a lot about. We realised we liked each other and got together.”

She revealed the romance was initially frowned upon after the pair were caught in bed together by a senior officer, she said: “We were hauled in and fined £150.”

“Within a few weeks Vanessa asked me to marry her again. And this time I couldn’t wait to say yes. We’d been through so much together and it felt so right.”

A Ministry of Defence spokesman told the Sun: “We’re pleased personnel registered in a same sex relationship now have equal rights to married couples.”

The couple plan to take leave to go on honeymoon in Majorca as soon as possible.

They are not the first armed personnel to have a civil partnership. Two female RAF soldiers tied the knot before Christmas.

The attitude marks a break from previous bans on gays serving in the armed forces, lifted in February 2000, which saw up to 200 homosexuals sacked each year.