Isle Of Man / Ellan Vannin

First same-sex marriage conversion on Isle of Man 'huge milestone'

Marc and Alan Steffan-Cowell Image copyright Marc Steffan-Cowell
Image caption Marc and Alan Steffan-Cowell said it had been a straight forward process

The first same-sex couple to change their civil partnership into a marriage on the Isle on Man have said it is a "huge milestone".

Marc and Alan Steffan-Cowell, both 26, became the first couple to convert their civil partnership on Monday.

They did not want another ceremony over fears it would make their wedding day on 3 July 2015 "less special".

The couple said they feel "happy and proud". Same-sex marriages were made legal on the island on Friday.

'Piece of history'

They became legal after Royal Assent to the Marriage and Civil Partnership Act was granted.

Under the legislation the couple, who met in 2014, have been able to keep the same date for their wedding day as they elected not to have a second ceremony.

Image copyright Marc Steffan-Cowell
Image caption Marc and Alan Steffan-Cowell entered into a civil partnership in 2015 having met a year earlier

They signed new forms before being issued with a wedding certificate.

Marc, from Kent, who is due to start training as a student constable, said: "To be able to stand alongside everyone else and have our marriage be equally as important certainty matters a great deal, not just to us but the LGBT community as a whole.

"The support from family, friends and well-wishers across the whole of the Isle of Man has been truly remarkable.

"To have a small piece of history in being the first same-sex couple to be married is amazing and we feel very privileged and honoured to have done so."

The Marriage and Civil Partnership Act is based on the same legal framework introduced in England two years ago.

The change in the Isle of Man law has been hailed as "historic moment" by the island's chief minister.

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