Their barrister Karon Monaghan QC told the court they had ‘deep-rooted and genuine ideological objections to marriage’. Civil partnerships have been available to same-sex couples since 2004 and offer the same legal and financial protection to couples as marriage. The decision to legalise same-sex marriage in 2014 means that gay couples have the option of either, whereas opposite-sex couples do not.
The ruling overturns a previous judgment against the couple by the Court of Appeal last year, but does not automatically mean that the law will change. However, Ciarán Kelly, deputy director of The Christian Institute, told Christian Today the decision was ‘unnecessary and unhelpful’ and called instead for a ‘fundamental review’ of the law about civil partnerships. In a Christian Institute release he said: ‘This is yet another fundamental attack on marriage from a court system that seems determined to do all it can to undermine it.