no vacancy

How Come The Anti-Gay British Hotel Owners Let Unmarried Straight Couples Spend The Night?

Peter and Hazelmary Bull, the British hotel owners who were just fined $5,700 for refusing to rent a room to gay couple Martyn Hall and Steven Preddy, have long maintained that their boarding policy isn’t anti-gay. It’s just anti-unmarried. See, the Bulls insisted their faith only permits them to let couples stay in a room together if they are married, and since their Christian beliefs refuse to acknowledge Hall and Preddy’s relationship, they were denied a place to sleep. So the Bulls deny rooms to unmarried straight couples too? So they said. Except now they have straight former guests coming forward saying the Bulls never inquired about their marital status.

The National Secular Society, which you might have guessed has an interest in shooting down discrimination disguised as Christian beliefs, relays:

But the National Secular Society can confirm that this policy was not applied to one of its own Council members. Dr Ray Newton stayed at the hotel in a double room with his female partner in 2006. They were not trying to pass themselves off as a married couple. Dr Newton said they were never asked whether they were married – and it never occurred to him that it would be an issue.

Dr Newton said: “We made no bones about our not being married and nobody asked any questions either before we arrived, while we were there or after we left. It never occurred to us that this might be a problem in a hotel in Britain in the 21st century.

“I have stayed in hotels with my partner all around the world, from the USA to China and this has never been an issue for us,” said Dr Newton. “We had no idea before we arrived that the owners of Chymorvah Hotel were evangelical Christians or that they had a policy about unmarried couples. It was only after we went to our room and found religious tracts all over the place — including in the bathroom — that we had any indication that religion was an issue for the owners of the establishment.”

From the couple that claimed they would have to shutter the hotel if forced to pay any damages to Hall and Preddy comes the not-so-stunning revelation: they are liars. AND SINNERS! To hell with them.

Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #britain #discrimination #england stories and more


  • Bernie Keating

    They were trying to preserve the sanctity of adultery.

  • the crustybastard

    Godbotherers who turn out to be bigots and liars? The hell you say!

  • mark c

    It is a sin to tell a lie.
    Ten Commandments.
    Dirty little liars.

    Love your brother as yourself.
    Forgot that, did they?

    Hate the sin, but not the sinner.
    Christianity 101.
    Did they just flunk out?

  • divkid

    is sodomy/buggery biblically proscribed for heterosexuals as well, married or not? anyone know?
    coz basically it always comes down to this “unnatural act” being the excuse.

    the married straight couple in the next room could be goin’ at it hammer and tongs working their way through leviticus (the fun way), while a gay couple could be chastely reading an improving tome sipping cocoa.

    who knows what unholy practices straight people consented to in their hallowed hotel beds. logically they should require *all* visitors to fill in a tick box of acceptable sexual activity.

    basically these christians are projecting their own sinister prurient interests on to a handy scapegoat community.

  • B

    No. 4 · divkid wrote, “is sodomy/buggery biblically proscribed for heterosexuals as well, married or not? anyone know?
    coz basically it always comes down to this “unnatural act” being the excuse.”

    It isn’t, although many years later, the Catholic Church decided that any sexual acts not geared towards procreation is a no-no. But that is something they added way after the Bible was written.

    To put it in perspective, read which states, “Corinthians 6:9 — Sins that Paul believes will send you to Hell:

    The author, Paul, listed a group of sinful activities. He believed that practicing any one of them would prevent a person from inheriting the Kingdom of God. They would be sent to Hell when they died. This verse has been translated in many ways among the 25 English versions of the Bible that we have analyzed.

    One of the condemned behaviors is “malakoi arsenokoitai” in the original Greek. Malakoi means soft. It was translated in both Matthew 11:8 and Luke 7:25 as “soft” (KJV) or as “fine” (NIV) in references to clothing. The actual meaning of arsenokoitai has been lost. Some sources in the early Church interpreted the phrase as referring to people of soft morals; i.e. exhibiting unethical behavior. That may well be the correct meaning, because presumably people from that era would probably have still known the meaning of the word “arsenokoitai.” Others in the early Church thought that it meant “temple prostitutes” – people who engaged in ritual sex in Pagan temples. Still others thought that it meant “masturbators.” At the time of Martin Luther, the latter meaning was in universal use. But by the 20th century, masturbation had become a more generally accepted behavior, whereas many Christians were concentrating on homosexuality as a despised activity. New Biblical translations abandoned references to masturbators and switched the attack to homosexuals. The last religious writing in English that interpreted 1 Corinthians 6:9 as referring to masturbation is believed to be the [Roman] Catholic Encyclopedia of 1967. 1

    “Each Bible translating team seems to take whatever activity that their group particularly disapproves of and inserts it into this verse. To compound their error, they usually do not have the decency to indicate by a footnote that the actual meaning of the word is unknown, and that they are merely guessing its meaning.

    “Conservative Christians tend to be very concerned about their own salvation and that of their family and friends. It is a pity that one of the behaviors that many Christians feel will cause them to lose their salvation is currently unknown. Many probably fear that they might inadvertently engage in the activity and thus having to spend eternity in Hell.”

  • divkid

    @B: thanks. very interesting. thats why i love this site, we can do the silly and the thoughtful *slaps on backs all round*.

    it seems these whole injunctions are based on VERY shaky grounds. there isn’t even unanimity on what the original sin of sodom was. and confusion as to the difference between sodomy and buggery. was there not till relatively recently extant laws against sodomy, i.e. oral sex, in certain u.s states?

    by some definitions i would qualify as a sodomite but not a bugger so do i get a free pass.

    and whats more, female sexuality mainly requires foreplay to facilitate penetration — ipso facto non procreational acts — putting parts of the body to uses for which they weren’t “designed ” : oral sex anybody? is it okay and still within “god’s plan” for anal sex to be used prior to the procreative act? therefore it would not in and of itself constitute an evil act against nature.

    What kind of god would care what you stick where, or which hole you use. obviously he’s far too busy looking to prevent natural disasters, suffering, and children getting cancer and stuff. oh yes.

  • Pat Duffy

    One of the many reasons I’m so glad I left Christianity more than 30 yrs ago. The religion’s gotten Nastier, probably because of all the Sane folk abandoning it for more civilized religions…or none at all.

  • orangegoblin

    It is probably better they pretended they did make sure all heterosexual couples were married.

    It allowed a court to test for the first time that civil partnerships should be treated as marriages in all areas of the law. The law as it stood was pretty clear but it is nice to have precedent on ones side as well in a common law system.

  • Cam

    @divkid: said…

    is sodomy/buggery biblically proscribed for heterosexuals as well, married or not? anyone know?

    A much more interesting section is two fold.

    1. The Ten Commandments specifically say do not commit adultry.

    2. The Bible then goes on to say that if a man divorces his wife and marries another woman he is committing adultry.

    Funny how the religious, Bible Thumpers don’t seem to mention that section isn’t it?

  • Kurt

    Can I go in a different direction? I am not an expert in British property law, but I assume this couple does not personally own the hotel. It is set up as a corporation, partnership, trust or some other form of limited liability.

    They are playing off their responsible about their moral beliefs under their own roof. Well, it is not. They have set it up legally so they are not personally responsible if something goes wrong at thier hotel (i.e. their personal property is proected if the corporation is negligent to a customer or unwable to repay a loan). Well, it works both ways. The corporation migth go to hell for sodomy, but they won’t.

Comments are closed.