Tesco has apologised to a same-sex couple, after a checkout worker allegedly told them that gay people “shouldn’t have babies”.

The incident occurred when Natalie Rivans was shopping with her girlfriend Helen Embleton, at the Tesco store in Surrey Quays on January 3.

A cashier made comments to the pair about a pregnant woman in front of them – telling the pair: “It’s wrong… gay people shouldn’t have babies.”

When she challenged the cashier on the comments, Ms Rivans claims she was told: “It’s a free country, so I can say what I like”.

Ms Rivans told PinkNews: “I’ve been out and gay for a long time however my partner not so much. This has really upset and stressed her out.

“I’m thoroughly disappointed [and] feel as though the LGBT family need to know about this.”

Tesco has confirmed that an internal investigation is underway into the incident.

A Tesco spokesperson told the Evening Standard: “Following inappropriate comments in store by one of our colleagues we have apologised to the customers involved and an internal investigation is now underway.

“We work hard to make sure that everyone is welcome at Tesco and put great emphasis on celebrating diversity and ensuring that we are an inclusive place to work and shop.

“Any remarks or actions from our colleagues which are not in line with these beliefs are not acceptable and will not be tolerated.”