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It's been a long road to get to here, and some people still want to deny us this equality.



I got married this summer. My new husband is not a great football fan, but I’ve brought him to a few matches. He’s from Wigan originally and leans towards the Latics, but I’m working on his conversion to Bladedom (is that a word?).


I couldn’t marry my first partner. We weren’t allowed. We had a “Civil Partnership” in 2007, after 19 years together, but by the time we were allowed to marry in 2014 he was too ill. That civil partnership was precious and gave me the legal protections I needed when he died.


Now I’m properly married, and do you know what’s the greatest thing about that?

Acceptance. We’ve had nothing but love and support from friends, family, neighbours and colleagues. Walking in a park on Saturday, we chatted to an elderly couple. They asked if my new husband was my father (there’s a difference in our ages). “No, he’s my husband.” I said. “Oh right!” they exclaimed, then went back to talking about football and some rubbish team in Tottenham.


It's been a long road to get to here, and some people still want to deny us this equality. Without it though, we’d probably be one Blade down!


Darren Swindells, Rainbow Blades member

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