UK: Councils 'should have right to say prayers', says Eric Pickles
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has criticised a ruling at the High Court today that having prayers on council meeting agendas is unlawful, saying that the right to worship is a "fundamental and hard-fought British liberty".
10 Feb 2012
A test case bid to outlaw prayers before local council meetings was won by the National Secular Society and an atheist councillor, Clive Bone.
They challenged the practice of Bideford town council, Devon, of having religious prayers on meeting agendas.
Today Mr Justice Ouseley, sitting in London, ruled: ''The saying of prayers as part of the formal meeting of a council is not lawful under section 111 of the Local Government Act 1972, and there is no statutory power permitting the practice to continue.''
Mr Bone later left the council because of its "refusal to adjust" its prayer policy. the rest
Let people wear cross with pride, urge bishops