Taxi driver denied license over apostrophe

May 30, 2008 at 1:41 PM

LONDON, May 30 (UPI) -- An English taxi driver says he has been denied a license because he failed a grammar test aimed at weeding out less than fluent foreign drivers.

Laurence Kirk has worked as a taxi driver before in his hometown of Bournemouth but has now been turned down because he came up short in an English exam designed by the borough council, reported the Daily Mail Reporter Friday.

"I used to be a taxi driver and I was a good and successful one," Kirk said to the Daily Mail Reporter. "But now the council are telling me I can't work as a taxi driver because I don't know how to use an apostrophe or where to put a semi-colon. No one has asked me if I know Bournemouth or what I would do if approached by a drunk person, just where to put an apostrophe. This is bureaucracy gone ballistic."

Steve Wright, Bournemouth's principal licensing officer, countered that the English test was a way to evaluate the level of language and other support the drivers will need to best serve passengers.

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