A taxi driver in Birmingham has been sacked after allegedly refusing to transport boxes of Remembrance Day poppies.

A passenger carrying the poppies was to be taken from a Royal British Legion club in Kingstanding to Villa Park stadium on Thursday afternoon.

But it was claimed the driver asked what was inside the boxes, then refused to take them after being told they contained remembrance poppies.

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Taxi company KMR Cars said the driver had since been dismissed for failing to tell bosses the passenger had not been collected.

The company also said that it had apologised for the outrage caused.

West Midlands Police said it was investigating the incident and subsequent “threats” to the taxi company.

KMR Cars said in a post on Facebook: “Due to this gross negligence of the driver and incompetence by not alerting the office of him not picking up the passenger, KMR Cars have dismissed the driver who cannot be named.”

The company said it had passed the driver’s details to Birmingham City Council, which was investigating the issue as “as a matter of urgency”.

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“KMR Cars as a company acknowledges and has the most utmost respect for those who fought and put their lives on the line for all of us present today and must be deservedly remembered on Remembrance Sunday with the poppy being a symbol of such sacrifice,” it said.

“KMR Cars has a zero per cent policy on any single staff/driver/customer who wishes to defame any remembrance/religious views. KMR Cars does not tolerate bias on the grounds of race, religion, beliefs, sex, gender, disability or other.”

A spokesperson for The Royal British Legion said: “We take the view that remembrance honours the sacrifices and contributions our armed forces community have made in defence of freedom, and so how people choose to remember, or not to, must be a matter of personal choice.

“If remembrance became compulsory it would lose its meaning and significance.”

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