Rise in the number of same-sex marriages in Lincolnshire

More same-sex couples are choosing to tie the knot in Lincolnshire, the latest Office for National Statistics data reveals.

LGTBQ rights campaign groups say the trend is a reflection of the progress made in England in recent years on gay couples' rights.

The number of same-sex marriages in Lincolnshire has risen

The number of same-sex marriages in Lincolnshire has risen

In Lincolnshire, there were 72 same-sex weddings in 2016, compared to 66 the previous year.

That's an increase of nine per cent since 2015.

Same-sex marriages have been legal since March 2014, but 2015 was the first calendar year that they were recorded.

In Lincolnshire, 30 weddings were between men and 42 between women in 2016.

A Stonewall spokesman said: "It’s important to remember that Northern Ireland is the only nation in the UK that doesn’t recognise same-sex marriage as a legal union.

"In addition, over 70 countries still criminalise same-sex relationships.

"Our work continues until we live in a world where all people are equal, regardless of their gender identity or sexual orientation."

When opposite-sex couples are included, there were 3,315 marriages in Lincolnshire in 2016 – three per cent more than in 2015.

Of those, only two per cent were between same-sex couples.

Andrew Copson, chief executive of Humanists UK, a charity which promotes non-religious values, said: "The rising number of same-sex marriages in England and Wales is undoubtedly a reflection of the progress made in recent years.

"But we still don't have equality for all – we urgently need legal recognition of same-sex marriages in Northern Ireland and humanist marriages in England and Wales so that more people can have the marriage they deserve and want."

Across England, there were 6,637 same-sex marriages in 2016, eight per cent more than in the previous year.

The data does not include same-sex civil partnerships which were converted into a marriage.

The Stonewall spokesman added: "It’s great to see the number of same-sex marriages increasing in England and Wales, but we know there’s so much left to do to create a safer environment for LGTB people.