Secondary equal marriage legislation passes House of Commons

The secondary legislation needed for same-sex marriages to commence in England and Wales passed the House of Commons on Wednesday evening.

The passage of six regulations paves the way for the first same-sex marriages to commence as planned on Saturday 29 March.

Peers in the House of Lords voted in favour of the measures last week.

Provisions include regulations governing the registration of same-sex marriages in shared religious premises and marriages conducted overseas.

Equalities Minister Helen Grant last Tuesday confirmed that same-sex couples who are in civil partnerships in England and Wales will be able to convert them to marriages by the end of 2014.

The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act was given Royal Assent on 17 July 2013 after passing both Houses of Parliament.