Baby's bare-chest picture too offensive for passport

A mother was told she could not use a photograph of her bare-chested baby son for a passport because it was "offensive".

Tracey Barnes, 36, from Claverham, Somerset, said nine-month-old Lewis had his top removed after being sick down it, but passport officials told her a topless picture would offend people in "fanatical religious countries".

The picture was taken last month by a professional photographer prior to a family holiday to Crete in May. Since 1998 all children must have their own passport to travel abroad.

Mrs Barnes and her husband Steve, 44, a printer, who have a daughter, Alice, four, sent the passport application via the Post Office Send and Check Service and were shocked to receive a reply that the pictures were unsuitable because the baby was undressed.

Mrs Barnes said she was told by an official that the picture would be seen as offensive in some parts of the world. "We are going to Greece. It's hardly a hotbed of fundamentalism. I couldn't believe it," she said.

"We followed the passport photo guidelines and they never mentioned that pictures would be unacceptable if the baby wasn't wearing a top. This sort of political correctness will only serve to stir up racial tensions." A new set of pictures have been taken.

A Home Office spokesman said an error was made by the official dealing with the application. "There is no official passport policy relating to displaying bare chests on passport photographs as UK Passport Service require a photograph to show head and shoulders only."

She said the UK Passport Service would issue revised guidelines to examining staff to ensure they were aware of the correct information to pass on to customers.

Islamic leaders said it was absurd to suggest a passport photograph of a semi-naked baby could upset Muslims and the Home Office was ill informed on Islamic culture.

Tahmina Saleem, from the Muslim Council of Britain, said: "The Home Office is increasingly imposing ridiculous morality on us without consulting us.

"I suggest that they consult us in future before making such sweeping statements."
taking political correctness too far or just taking the urine?
Had to get a passport for my daughter when she was 10 months old. She is now 18 months old and looks absolutely nothing like her photo. What was the point of that then?
Surely, its would only be offensive if he had pierced nips or a tatoo? 8O :? :wink:
eye_spy said:
Had to get a passport for my daughter when she was 10 months old. She is now 18 months old and looks absolutely nothing like her photo. What was the point of that then?
Eye, wait until baby eye-spy is another two years older and going through customs :? had this in Canaries about 2 years back when we took friends nipper on hols with us, some dullard Spanish Customs bloke asking the poor kid is this you on this photograph :roll: 8O
I remeber when my sister had to get my nephew photographed for his passport. She had to crouch down out of sight while holding him up so his head was in the right place for the picture.
What a hoot! and he looks completely different now too.


this is why this country is going to the pits, absolutely ridiculus. we are a nation of PC idiots, the politicians take it too far, and anyone with any authority or neck on the line follows suit, ie. the army.

if i could id move to NZ, Aus or Canada. really struggling to find anything to be proud about being british.

:x :x :x
Nah - atypical of how the UK has gone to the dogs under the gentle administration of BLiar + croneys

Emigration paperwork applied for... I'm off 8)
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