Same sex couples in England and Wales who have had the right to enter into a civil partnership since 2005 will now be able to marry.
The bill allowing gay and lesbian couples the same rights as their heterosexual counterparts passed it Its final parliamentary hurdle yesterday. It will receive official royal assent this week. The first weddings are expected not before 2014 due to more issues needing clarification such as the impact on pensions.
Although the bill had the support of both Labour and the Liberal Democrats, the legislation has damaged Prime Minister David Cameron among his own Conservative party, many of whom voted against it.
Scotland and Northern Ireland have their own laws on the matter.