A French mayor who condemned and mocked same-sex marriage has officiated his own son’s gay wedding.

Despite being a long-standing critic of same-sex marriage, Raymond Bardet, mayor of Ville-la-Grand in south-eastern France, officiated the ceremony last Saturday.

He told the Dauphiné Libéré: “My son was getting married, there was no question of letting anyone else do it.

“If I had asked a deputy to celebrate the marriage, people could have thought that I was criticising my son or that we had fallen out.

“Only two and a half months ago I discovered that my son was gay.

“I am his father and I would be the one to celebrate his union, as I would have done for his sister.

“I didn’t know his partner, but he’s a good person and they make a beautiful couple together. I saw two smart men, very content together.

“We always think that it doesn’t affect us, that was my way of seeing things, I never questioned it.”

In January of last year he lampooned same-sex marriage with a mock wedding between his communications officer and general services manager, who was clad in a bridal veil.

However, Bardet has not changed his principles on gay marriage, saying, “No, I have not changed my mind, I think this is not what nature intended.”

He also said: “I will never do any other gay marriages; I did it because it’s my son.”

(Translation: Morgan Haxby)