On the 29th March 2014, the bill legalising same-sex marriage across England and Wales received Royal assent and became law. The first marriages took place that very day. On the 12th March 2014, the Marriage and Civil Partnerships (Scotland) Act received Royal assent and it is predicted that the first same-sex marriages in Scotland will take place in late 2014. That means that three out of the four countries that makes up the United Kingdom allow gays, lesbians and bisexuals to marry their same-sex partners. However Northern Ireland remains the only country that doesn't. In April 2014, the Northern Ireland Assembly defeated the Sinn Fein motion by just eight votes. 51 members voted against the motion with 43 voting in favour.
Between the 29th March and 30th June, there have been 1,409 same-sex marriages according to the Office of National Statistics. In the first three days there were 95 weddings. Overall more female couples (796) have married than male couples (613).
When #David Cameron first announced the Coalition Government's intention to legalise same-sex marriage at the Conservative Party Conference in 2011. In the speech he made, David Cameron said, "I don't support gay marriage in spite of being a conservative. I support gay marriage because I am a conservative." However when the bill to legalise same-sex marriage in England and Wales passed through the House of Commons in February 2013, more Conservative members of Parliament voted against the bill than for it. 134 Conservative MPs voted against in compared to the 123 who voted in favour of it.
A main group in opposition to same-sex marriage were religious groups like the Catholic Church, the Church of England and some Muslim and Jewish groups.
Former Catholic Cardinal Keith O'Brien wrote in The Sunday Telegraph in 2012 that he believed legalising gay marriage would lead to polygamy, "Other dangers exist. If marriage can be redefined so that it no longer means a man and a woman but two men or two women, why stop there? Why not allow three men or a woman and two men to constitute a marriage, if they pledge their fidelity to one another? If marriage is simply about adults who love each other, on what basis can three adults who love each other be prevented from marrying?" The Vatican later sacked Cardinal O'Brien after it was revealed he had made "Inappropriate acts" towards fellow priests and was later reported by The Guardian that he had had a long-term relationship with one of the priests who had complained.
In the bible itself, where all Christian religions take their teachings from, it is clear that marriage is thought to be between a man and a woman. In the book of Matthew, Chapter 19, verses 4-6, it says, "'Haven't you read… that at the beginning the Creator 'made them male and female,' and said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh'? So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate."
However according to a poll conducted by Ipsos MORI, the majority of Britons now believe that same-sex couples should be allowed the legal right to marry. The report was published on the 23rd April 2014 and it was a representative sample of 1002 adults aged 18 ad above. Since 1975, the number of people agreeing has quadrupled. 69% now agree to the statement, "homosexual couples should be allowed to marry each other." Only 16% agreed in 1975.