Anti-gay marriage MP’s bill for ‘Margaret Thatcher Day’ fails

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Conservative MP Peter Bone, a staunch equal marriage opponent, seemingly isn’t having a very good week.

Earlier this week, Bone took to strongly denying allegations of benefit fraud relating to his mother-in-law.

The 61-year-old has now seen the demise of a bill which he championed – one to rename the August Bank Holiday after late former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

In pushing for the bill to go ahead, Bone had described Thatcher as a woman of “courage and conviction”.

He said: “Baroness Thatcher was without doubt one of the greatest prime ministers in living memory.

“She not only did our country a great service but she gave our country back its pride and returned it to economic prosperity after some of the darkest days. She gave us a legacy to be proud of.”

The bill failed at its second reading because, with 30 private members bills also to be discussed on the same day, the Commons ran out of time to debate it.

Almost 125,000 people had signed a petition to scrap the bill, with 7,000 of those being added in the 24 hours leading up to the debate.

A petition has also been started to push the Government to rename the August Bank Holiday after late gay computer genius and codebreaker Alan Turing, rather than after Thatcher.

Mr Bone suggested in March 2012 that the Church of England should respond to the reform by saying: “marriage is between a man and a woman so this is completely nuts”.

Speaking to in November 2013, Mr Bone said this had been a reference to the political implementation of the policy rather than the actual principle of marriage rights for same-sex couples.

The Wellingborough MP unsuccessfully tabled a private member’s bill, which had called for a referendum on England and Wales’ same-sex marriage law.