‘Our dream holiday became a nightmare’

The Edwards family, of Chestnut Avenue, Wheatley Hills, suffered a nightmare holiday in the Dominican Republic, during which their room was flooded with sewage. L-R are three-year-old Zak, Michael, 49, and his wife Linzie, 31. Picture: Liz Mockler D1826LM
The Edwards family, of Chestnut Avenue, Wheatley Hills, suffered a nightmare holiday in the Dominican Republic, during which their room was flooded with sewage. L-R are three-year-old Zak, Michael, 49, and his wife Linzie, 31. Picture: Liz Mockler D1826LM

A DREAM getaway in the sun turned into the holiday from hell when a family was struck down by severe illness.

Undercooked meat in the hotel restaurant and raw sewage flooding their hotel room were among the appalling conditions experienced by a Wheatley Hills family in the Dominican Republic.

The Edwards family, from Doncaster, had their holiday in the Dominican Republic ruined after a storm caused their hotel to flood with sewage.

The Edwards family, from Doncaster, had their holiday in the Dominican Republic ruined after a storm caused their hotel to flood with sewage.

Solicitors continue to battle with tour operator Thomas Cook to win compensation for two family members who say they are still suffering gastric problems three years on.

The Edwards had hoped for a once-in-a-lifetime trip but dad Michael, 49, was taken ill on day two at the four star Grand Oasis Hotel after he believes he ate undercooked chicken.

Mr Edwards, of Chestnut Avenue, was on holiday with wife Linzie, 31 - a waitress at Oliver’s near Edenthorpe - and their son Zak - then just six months old - along with in laws Nigel Bryett, 56, and his wife Lynn, 49.

He said: “I spent almost all my holiday in bed. It was awful. We eventually had to pay to move to another hotel. I’m absolutely disgusted with Thomas Cook. That hotel shouldn’t even be in the brochure.”

The Edwards family, of Chestnut Avenue, Wheatley Hills, suffered a nightmare holiday in the Dominican Republic, during which their room was flooded with sewage. L-R are three-year-old Zak, Michael, 49, and his wife Linzie, 31. Picture: Liz Mockler D1827LM

The Edwards family, of Chestnut Avenue, Wheatley Hills, suffered a nightmare holiday in the Dominican Republic, during which their room was flooded with sewage. L-R are three-year-old Zak, Michael, 49, and his wife Linzie, 31. Picture: Liz Mockler D1827LM

To make matters worse, several days later a storm hit and torrential rain caused a large pool of water containing raw sewage to flood their hotel room. Dogs and birds were also seen in the cooking area.

Mr Edwards, who revealed the trip for him, his wife and their son cost about £4,000, added: “The general state of the hotel was appalling and the fact that my wife was left to clean sewage out of our room herself is unforgiveable.

“We were ankle deep in water, which was not only unhygienic, but also dangerous. We went on holiday to relax, but the reality could not have been further from it.”

The bridge engineer added: “I feel like I’m falling to pieces. It’s having an effect on my work and I’m still suffering with diarrhoea.” Solicitors Irwin Mitchell helped settle undisclosed claims for Mr Edwards, his wife and Zak, subject to another hearing.

However, the claims for Mr and Mrs Bryett remain outstanding despite both claiming they are suffering from diarrhoea and stomach pains from the illnesses contracted on the holiday in May 2009.

A Thomas Cook spokesman said: “It is always disappointing for anyone to be unwell whilst they are on holiday, and we always take any reports of illness from our customers seriously.

“We continue to liaise with Mrs Bryett and Mr Edward’s legal representative to reach agreement on the recent offers that we have made to them.”