THURROCK MP's took part in the vote for gay marriage. 

In last night’s free vote in the House of Commons, South Basildon and East Thurrock Tory MP Stephen Metcalfe voted against the second reading of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill.

Jackie Doyle-Price, Tory MP for Thurrock, abstained from the vote. 

She said: "I chose to abstain because although I believe in equality for same sex couples, the Bill before us is divisive.

"Some people describe marriage as an institution. I view it as a sacrament. 

"Approaching this issue in the way the current bill does puts the established church in conflict with the law of the land and unnecessarily challenges those whose faith underpins their view of what marriage is.

"My proposal is that we should replace civil partnerships and civil marriages with a new civil union. 

"This would achieve equality, it would allow those who wish to marry in church to do so, and it would uphold the christian values which underpin our society. 

"I hope the Bill can be amended accordingly, or I will not be able to support it."

Stephen Metcalfe, East Thurrock MP, said: “This is a particularly contentious issue and one which I very carefully considered over many months. I voted against the Bill because I felt the Government had no mandate for the change.”