This breathtaking photo of a lesbian couple in Derry shows how important same-sex marriage in Northern Ireland really is

Derry Northern Ireland same-sex marriage

A powerful photo of a lesbian couple on their wedding day in Derry, Northern Ireland has gone viral after same-sex marriage finally became legal in the territory today (January 13).

It is four months today since Emma Bradley and Danielle Doherty from Derry, Northern Ireland, tied the knot. The couple would have loved to be able to get married in the city they call home – but sadly, same-sex marriage had not yet come to Northern Ireland.

The couple got married on September 13, 2019 in Rockhill House in Letterkenny, County Donegal, which is in the Republic of Ireland. Same-sex marriage has been legal there since the country’s 2015 referendum.

As activists and LGBT+ people across Northern Ireland celebrate same-sex marriage, the breathtaking photo of Emma and Danielle on their special day, standing on Free Derry Corner, has gone viral.

Emma Bradley and Danielle Doherty had wedding photos taken in Northern Ireland before tying the knot in the Republic of Ireland.

On their wedding day, Emma and Danielle had photos taken in Derry before they made the journey across the border so they could legally tie the knot.

“For us, Derry is our home,” Bradley told PinkNews, “and Free Derry corner is one of the most recognisable landmarks our city has. Its significance to the people of our city can be interpreted in many ways, but for us as a same-sex couple, it represents being free to be who you are, and we were proud to stand in front of an iconic place to demonstrate our civil rights; just like the generations before us did.”

She continued: “We are thrilled that we are legally married in the place that we call home. It’s disappointing that it took so long but it’s a fantastic step forward for the younger generations who want to show their love in their home town regardless of their sexuality.”

For us, Derry is our home, and Free Derry corner is one of the most recognisable landmarks our city has.

Speaking to BBC Radio Foyle earlier today, the couple explained that they had photos taken in their hometown before their ceremony because they wanted to incorporate Derry.

Emma and Danielle wedding Derry Northern Ireland

Emma and Danielle on their wedding day in Derry (Holly and Lime Photography)

“We chose to do it the way we wanted to do it – in an unconventional way. We picked Friday 13th, we got ready that morning together, we did the day how we wanted to do it rather than how people would have expected. It just turned out perfect,” the couple said.

The couple chose Free Derry Corner because it represents ‘being free to be who you are.’

Wedding photographer Lisa Byrne of Holly and Lime Photography – who captured the stunning shots – told PinkNews that Emma and Danielle chose Free Derry Corner for their wedding photo.

“We met up a couple of weeks before their wedding and they suggested having a photoshoot in Derry before the ceremony, which was in Rockhill House in Letterkenny. They wanted to have some photos around the Bogside and various places in the town,” she said.

Same-sex marriage became legal today in Northern Ireland, meaning that couples will now be able to give notice of their intention to marry, with the first ceremonies expected in February.

The news that same-sex marriage and abortion would be legalised in came in October 2019, as time ran out to restore a devolved government and stop the bill. The first weddings will be able to take place on February 10.