Gay couple win B&B discrimination case

A gay couple have won their legal action against a B&B in Cornwall that did not allow them to share a double room.

Hotel owners Peter and Hazel Bull refused to allow civil partners Martyn Hall and Steve Preddy to share rooms because of their sexuality.

The B&B owners countered that it would have been against their Christian beliefs because the gay couple were not "married".

Mr and Mrs Bull also claimed that they would have applied the same sanction in the case of an unmarried heterosexual couple.

The judge ruled in favour of Mr Preddy and Mr Hall, making this one of the first cases in which a couple have won legal action using discrimination provisions in civil partnership legislation from 2007.

Commenting on the victory, group director at the Equality and Human Rights Commission John Wadham said: "The right of an individual to practice their religion and live out their beliefs is one of the most fundamental rights a person can have, but so is the right not to be turned away by a hotel just because you are gay."

The case highlights the fact that when you are setting up and running a B&B, it's important to know your legal obligations. Lawpack's book Starting Up and Running a B&B can help you to find out all you need to know about running a B&B in one easy-to-read guide.

Published on: January 19, 2011

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