Christian hotel owners win right to take 'gay ban' case to Supreme Court

Christian hotel owners win right to take 'gay ban' case to Supreme CourtPA

A Christian couple who refused to let a gay couple rent a double room at their Cornwall guest house have won the right to take their case to the Supreme Court, according to the BBC.

Peter and Hazelmary Bull refused to allow gay couple Steven Preddy and Martyn Hall, from Bristol, to stay together in a double room at Chymorvah House in Marazion back in 2008.

The couple say they believe sex outside marriage to be a "sin" and have denied direct or indirect discrimination.

But judges have twice ruled that the couple broke equality laws. In February, the couple took their case to the Court of Appeal and lost their appeal against an earlier ruling they had acted unlawfully.

They were appealing against a decision by a judge at Bristol County Court that they had acted unlawfully by turning the two men away.

Lady Justice Rafferty said a homosexual couple "cannot comply with the restriction because each party is of the same sex and therefore cannot marry".

She added: "The criterion at the heart of the restriction, that the couple should be married, is necessarily linked to the characteristic of an heterosexual orientation."

Mrs Bull told the BBC: "I feel that the law has gone too far. Certainly Pete and I are ready to see if we can achieve some sort of result whereby two lifestyles can live alongside each other."

The pair are being backed by the Christian Institute, who say they were not discriminating because they applied their policy to all unmarried couples, not just same-sex couples.

But Mr Preddy and Mr Hall were joined together by a civil partnership, so Dr Michael Halls, from the charity Intercom Trust, which works with lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities, said: "[Mr and Mrs Bull] were discriminating against marriage and civil partnership.

"I think the conflict of rights in this case will be decided against them."

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