Ken Threatens to Sue Bromley Council

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There have been two stories getting a lot of attention in the gay press involving idiotic London borough councils in the last few months. First, the brilliant Westminster councilors decided that rainbow flags were an unacceptable blight on the urban landscape… in Soho. Just as things were heating up, our beloved mayor rode in, like a white knight, to “slam” the decision.

Of course, rainbow flags in Soho might seem like a trifling issue, but now Ken’s done it again, in a rather more significant case. Several months ago, the conservative-led Bromley council decided that, although they had no choice but to issue “civil partnerships” to same-sex couples starting this coming December (like every other local council in Britain is required to) they wouldn’t allow gay couples to actually have a ceremony on council property. Protests ensued, and now, two months later, Ken is threatening legal action.

You might think Londonist might take this opportunity to dust off some tired gay marriage quip (“couldn’t you find somewhere a little more fabulous to get hitched than Bromley Civic Centre?”), or to somehow find a way to work in a reference to Jordan’s wedding dress… but we don’t need to go to these lengths to get you to chuckle. All we have to do is quote conservative councillor Michael John Tickner’s comments during the debate:

We hear a lot about gay rights but you should also take account of straight people’s rights — people who have normal sexual relationships.

Ha ha ha! Oh, Councillor Tickner, you’re such a goof!

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First, what exactly are the rights of straight people, and how exactly would two boyfriends signing a piece of paper in Bromley Civic Centre infringe on those rights? Second, are we the only ones who require a bit more evidence before we’re convinced that Councillor Tickner (pictured at left) in fact has “normal sexual relationships”?

(Oh and while we’re at it: Blair’s “civil partnership” law that is coming into effect this coming December is an utterly unacceptable replacement for full equality under the law for same-sex couples. Since you asked. Hey Ken, do you think you could help us out on this one too?)

Photo of the July 30th Bromley protest by an anonymous photographer, posted here. Photo of Councillor Tickner from the webpage of Bromley Council.

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  • http://www.londonist.com Ken

    I had the misfortune of living in Bromley for several years. It’s a horribly conservative and Conservative little hole, full of people who believe the Daily Mail provides balanced coverage, so it’s no surprise this kind of reactionary crap is expressed by its councillors.

  • http://zefrog.blogspot.com Zefrog

    Thanks for having this piece on Londonist… There seems to be very little about the LGBT community on your site…

    How about something on London hosting Europride next year for example?

    May I ad regarding the rainbow flag issue that it will become obvious to anyone having a stroll around Soho that National flags over restaurants are still allowed by the Council (I can think of the huge Union Jack and French flag facing each other just off Seven Dials) while Rainbow flags are banned… is that discrimination or what?

  • Laurie

    Regarding Zefrog’s comment – hardly surprising another Tory council!