Couple’s triple celebration dream holiday in Cape Verde is turned into a nightmare after husband, 70, loses over a STONE when they are struck down by a severe gastric illness
A couple who planned the trip of a lifetime have been left devastated after contracting severe gastric bug which ruined their dream 5* holiday.
David Barratt from Prudhoe, Northumberland, has lost 20lbs in weight and is continuing to suffer as a result of the gastric illness he developed during a Christmas break with wife Jacqui at RiuTouareg in Boa Vista, Cape Verde.
The holiday was arranged to mark his 70th birthday, her 60th and their 40th wedding anniversary.
David Barratt (pictured right, wife Jacqui, left) lost 20lbs in weight and is continuing to suffer as a result of the gastric illness he developed during a Christmas break in Cape Verde.
Father-of-two Mr Barratt was advised that his symptoms were so severe that, following his return to the UK, his GP referred him for further tests to the Infectious Diseases Unit at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle.
And now the problems have led the Barratts to call on specialist lawyers to investigate how their dream 10-day holiday arranged through Thomson became ‘a nightmare’.
Mr Barratt said: ‘This holiday was meant to be the best we had ever been on, but it was terrible.
‘To make matters worse, the illness means we’ve had to put plans to visit my daughter and her wife on hold even though we haven’t seen them for nearly six months.
Grandfather Mr Barratt first began experiencing symptoms including diarrhoea, nausea and joint pains on Christmas morning 2016, a couple of days into the holiday at this resort
‘They are expecting their first baby and we are yet to celebrate with them because I’m afraid to pass anything on.
‘We are hugely frustrated by everything that has happened and want to know how I came to fall ill. We just want answers.’
Grandfather Mr Barratt first began experiencing symptoms including diarrhoea, nausea and joint pains on Christmas morning 2016, a couple of days into the holiday.
He said: ‘We spent a huge amount of time researching the holiday to ensure it would be perfect and it just turned out to be a nightmare.
Mr and Mrs Barratt with their son Craif (centre). They say the shower and balcony of their room had not been cleaned and towels were not replaced
‘In addition to my illness, we were also concerned by the condition of the swimming pool, the water was cloudy, tiles were missing and we did not see it being cleaned.
‘We were also unhappy with the state of our room upon arrival, from what we could tell, the shower and balcony had not been cleaned and towels were not replaced.’
Retired painter and decorator David also claims to have spotted kitchen staff handling both raw and cooked meat with the same gloves.
He also said cats roamed the resort to the extent they were climbing on tables.
Mr Barratt added: ‘The hot food was sometimes cold, even if we were in the restaurant as soon as it opened. On several occasions I witnessed the staff top up the food trays with fresh food and leave the existing food at the bottom.’
Jacqui, a retired hairdresser who looked after David following his illness, described the hotel as ‘absolutely filthy’.
She is ‘extremely worried’ about him and said ‘the holiday has had a big impact on both of our lives’.
The Barratts have called lawyers to investigate how their dream holiday became ‘a nightmare’
Mr Barratt added: ‘Unfortunately the holiday was memorable for all the wrong reasons.’
specialist illness lawyer who is representing the couple, said: ‘The impact of gastric illness should never be underestimated, as the problems can leave victims with symptoms from which they never fully recover.We are now determined to help our clients gain answers regarding the issues they faced and, as part of our investigations, we would be keen to hear from anyone else affected by similar issues at the resort.’
A spokesman for Thomson said: ‘We’re sorry to hear of Mr and Mrs Barratt’s experience. As this is now subject to legal proceedings, it would be inappropriate for us to comment further.’
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