One of the UK’s leading bloggers is to ‘tie the knot’ with his partner of thirteen years.

Iain Dale’s eponymous diary is one of the most-visited political blogs in the country.

In 2005 it was nominated for the Political Blog of the Year Award.

He was the first out gay Tory selected to contest a Parliamentary seat, but failed to win North Norfolk in the 2005 election.

His blog has led to regular appearances on radio and TV and he writes for The Daily Telegraph and other newspapers.

Last year he was named as one of the 50 most influential gay people in British politics.

Mr Dale,45, told PinkNews.co.uk that he will enter into a civil partnership with John Simmons at Wadhurst Casle in Kent next month.

The couple live near Tunbridge Wells.

Mr Dale explained that when civil partnerships became legal in December 2005 they had decided to formalise their relationship, but had not had time to plan the event until recently.

“We decided that if we lasted thirteen years together we might last another thirteen!” said Mr Dale.

Mr Simmons, 43, works with Mr Dale on the new magazine he is launching, Total Politics.

The first issue comes out in June, the week after their civil partnership, so the couple will not be departing on honeymoon after the ceremony and reception.

“We differ over holidays, I love them and he hates them,” Mr Dale said.

“The only things we have in common are that we both love cars and we have a Jack Russell, but we have no interests in common. He is not as interested in politics as I am.”

Mr Dale confirmed that Shadow Cabinet members David Davis and Nick Herbert will be among the 100 guests at the ceremony and reception.

However, his friend Ann Widdecombe will not be able to attend. “Sadly, she is in Spain.”

Mr Dale quashed rumours that he had been approached by any press outlets for exclusive rights to the civil partnership.

“Sadly no offers received yet but there is still time!” he told joked.