Holiday from hell for Broadstairs family

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Thursday, June 25, 2009, 13:00

A FAMILY from Broadstairs has finally received compensation two years after a holiday from hell.

Tracey Chambers and her relatives were among 500 British tourists who stayed at a hotel that was plagued by illnesses.

Tracey, who went to the Caribbean hotspot with her boyfriend Paul Ellington, 12-year-old daughter Shannon Bailey, mum Jacqueline, dad Clarence and 13-year-old nephew Josh Wells, had saved up £6,000 for the dream holiday to the four-star Bahia Principe Hotel in the Dominican Republic.

But the trip of a lifetime soon turned into a nightmare as the family were struck by illnesses just days after arriving. They spent what should have been two weeks in paradise instead chained to the loo suffering sickness and diarrhoea.

Tracey, 43, said: “People were being sick in the swimming pool and the toilets were all blocked up. Lots of people were being sick. We were told to watch what we ate because there was bug going round.

“We all caught a norovirus, which are known as winter vomiting viruses. They wouldn’t let us leave the hotel because they weren’t sure what it was we had. Me and my daughter managed to shake it off but caught it a second time before we came home. My dad had to be put on a drip because he was dehydrated and couldn’t take on enough water. They were charging 40 dollars for a trip to the hospital.

“We ended up looking after two young boys whose parents had to go into hospital. My mum and dad had to go to a specialist in London when we got back and we were all scarred by the experience.”

Other guests were diagnosed with shigella, giardia, salmonella and E coli, thought to have come from food dressings.

Tracey, her boyfriend and her mother received compensation from My Travel using law firm Irwin Mitchell – which has won more than £2.5 million the tourists affected. The cases of her father, daughter and nephew have not yet been decided.

A spokesperson for Thomas Cook, which owns My Travel, said: “We were very concerned that the Chambers family became unwell at the Bahia Principe in 2007. We are pleased this case has now been settled and we want to reassure all our customers that we work with our hotel partners to continually monitor the hygiene standards in their properties.”


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