Christian Institute meetings will discuss Ashers

Daniel McArthur, director of Ashers Bakery with wife Amy, outside Belfast High Court
Daniel McArthur, director of Ashers Bakery with wife Amy, outside Belfast High Court

Defendants in two high-profile discrimation cases will share their experiences at a series of meetings hosted by the Christian Institute in Northern Ireland.

It comes as the McArthur family, owners of Belfast-based baking company Ashers, prepare to return to the Court of Appeal tomorrow, where they are expected to learn they have no legal recourse to a potential challenge in the Supreme Court.

The Christian Institute, which has supported the McArthur family throughout the case, has organised three meetings across the province this month. Speaking at the events will be Adrian Smith and Hazelmary Bull, who have both been at the centre of similar discrimination cases in England.

The first meeting will take place at Armagh City Hotel, Armagh on Friday at 8pm. Another will be held at Magherabuoy House Hotel, Portrush on Monday, November 28 at 8pm, and the final event will take place at Iron Hall Evangelical Church, Belfast on Tuesday, November 29 at 12.30pm.

The latest on the Ashers case will also be discussed.

Ashers is seeking to overturn a decision made last year by the County Court, which found it had broken discrimination laws by refusing to make a cake with a slogan supporting same-sex marriage.

Last month, Court of Appeal judges upheld the original ruling agaisnt Ashers. However, while the McArthur family may have no recourse for further appeals in the UK, there is still a possibility they could take their case to the European Court of Human Rights.

Meanwhile, NI’s Attorney General John Larkin QC, who has a unique statutory power of referral in devolution issues, has stepped in and is seeking to refer the case to the Supreme Court.