First same-sex couple to marry in Northern Ireland hail ‘wonderful day’

Northern Ireland’s first same-sex couple to transform their civil partnership into a marriage have said it is a wonderful day.

Cara McCann and Amanda McGurk celebrated on the steps of Belfast City Hall.

Couples in more than 1,300 same-sex civil partnerships can tie the knot in Northern Ireland from Monday.

Ms McCann said: “We fought long and hard for the right to marry.”

She added: “We want to thank everyone who was part of this great movement for love and equality, and which has delivered this wonderful, positive change for our society.”

It followed a lengthy campaign and legislative change at Westminster while Stormont powersharing was suspended.

Stormont finance minister Conor Murphy said 32 couples planned to convert their civil partnerships this week.