A family who embarked on a trip of a lifetime were left devastated after all SIXTEEN of them were struck down by a mystery illness.
Furious Emma Austin, 24, booked the dream holiday to Egypt as a last big family vacation for her uncle, Robert Sandey, who is suffering from cancer.
But just a few days into the £4,000 break all 16 members of the family – who range from six months to 60 – became ill with diarrhoea and stomach cramps.
The family, from Bodmin, Cornwall, believe that poor hygiene at the Tropitel Naama Bay Hotel in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, was to blame.
Emma, who is disabled, said that some of the family are still feeling ill three weeks after returning home and they are considering legal action.
However, the company the holiday was booked through – Monster Travel – has now ceased trading.
Emma said the whole family became seriously ill and worst affected was her aunt Ann Sandey, who had a bad reaction to morphine prescribed for the pain she was suffering.
She said: ”The holiday was just horrendous. A lot of us are still feeling ill and on medication, including myself. I lost a stone and a half in weight.
”My auntie became extremely ill after the hospital in Egypt gave her morphine and she had a terrible reaction to it.
”We spent over £4,000 on the holiday but it just proved to be a horrific disaster. We had all saved for more than a year to afford this trip.
”We knew this would probably be our last big holiday together as my uncle is battling cancer.
”This together with the fact that some of the younger members of the family are leaving home to start new careers, meant we wanted this to be a special time for our family.”
Miss Austin and her partner, Andrew Frost, 36, who is also disabled, and their three children were hit first with stomach cramps, diarrhoea and sickness.
Her parents, six brothers and sister, as well as her aunt and uncle, also became seriously unwell.
She said: ”The pains in my stomach were like nothing I’ve ever experienced. I was bent double with pain. I’ve never been so glad to fly home.
”Even now, several weeks later, many of us continue to experience symptoms. I can’t believe we spent so much money only to end up suffering like this.”
Birmingham-based law firm Irwin Mitchell is now handling the family’s complaint.
The company says that although Monster Trading has ceased trading, it has been discovered a third party sold the holiday.
Amandeep Dhillon, a travel law expert with Irwin Mitchell, said: ”Holiday companies have a responsibility to ensure that the hotels they send customers to are safe and they comply with health and safety.”