Ben Spence received a passport that featured a photo of a complete stranger
Ben Spence paid £82 to update the document ahead of a weekend birthday trip to Amsterdam with friends at the end of this month.
It came back with all his correct information – but had a picture of a total stranger.
Mr Spence, 28, said: "They put a completely different person's picture in my passport. I couldn't believe it."
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I was worried I'd miss my trip to Amsterdam
Mr Spence, from Blackheath, southeast London, collected his new passport from his local post office.
He said: "I flicked through it, and it seemed all fine. But my friend who was with me looked over my shoulder said, ‘Wait that's not you!
"We had a bit of a laugh about it – but then realised the security issue involved.
Mr Spence was concerned that he might miss his holiday in the time it takes for a replacement
"I'd also waited four weeks for it and was worried I'd miss my trip to Amsterdam.”
Mr Spence, an air conditioning fitter, had to arrange an emergency appointment with the Passport Office in central London, and had to miss a day off work.
He added: "I'm really frustrated that the Home Office are the ones that made the mistake, and I've had to take a day off work to sort this out.
"All they could offer me was an apology.
Celebrity passport photos Tue, March 1, 2016
No need to worry about that awful passport photo anymore, here are the passport photos of the stars, including Marilyn Monroe, David Beckham and Selena Gomez.
Alamy 1 of 16
May 19, 2006; Manhattan, NY, USA; 1954 Marilyn Monroe United States Passport, estimated to sell for U.S. $30,000-$40,000
He added: "It's a good job I did notice it because if I went to the airport on my birthday with the wrong picture they could have arrested me."
The Home Office said: "HM Passport Office processes more than six million passport applications each year and errors are very rare.
"Ensuring that passports are issued correctly is an absolute priority and any breaches of our high standards are examined thoroughly.
"We apologise for the inconvenience caused to Mr Spence.”
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