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Last Updated: Wednesday, 21 December 2005, 13:07 GMT
Druids become gay civil partners
Philip Main and David Girvan
Philip Main and David Girvan arriving for the ceremony
After more than 20 years together, two Druid priests exchanged vows during Wrexham's first gay civil partnership ceremony on Wednesday.

Wearing white robes, Philip Main and David Girvan made their promises to each other on the day of the Winter Solstice, a pagan celebration.

More than 30 friends and family gathered to witness the event.

A small party is being held but the couple will later take centre stage in their local pantomime production.

The 20-minute partnership ceremony at Wrexham's register office was an emotional event and as the pair walked down the aisle to classical music, their guests moved in their seats nervously.

Mr Main, 49, and Mr Girvan, 53, held hands as they exchanged their vows and swapped wedding rings.

There was a round of applause as an emotional registrar named them civil partners.

Philip Main and David Girvan signing the register
It's a special day for us anyway and to have special people around us is wonderful
Philip Main

Speaking after the service, the pair, who held a commitment ceremony as Druids more than 16 years ago, said they were "elated".

"It means that we're legally recognised as a couple together, that should anything happen to either of us we have that weight of the law behind us," said Mr Main.

'Special day'

"For me it's about being relaxed....as much as people have assumed we were together, now we're together officially and it's a grand feeling, a lovely, warm feeling," added his partner David.

The pair were the first couple to take part in the civil ceremony in Wrexham and in a twist of fate, Wednesday also marked a special day in their faith.

"It's the mid Winter solstice, it's the day when we recognise that the light comes back to the land, the days start getting longer and the summer sun starts arriving," said Mr Main.

"It's a special day for us anyway and to have special people around us is wonderful.

"Since we registered our intent, life has been hectic as usual, we're both involved in pantomime and we've had performances every night as we will tonight," he added.

Mr Main is playing a wood elf and his partner is the Sheriff in the amateur production of Robin Hood and the Babes in the Wood at Grove Park Little Theatre in Wrexham.

"I won't be getting drunk tonight - unfortunately!" laughed Mr Girvan.


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