A couple from Cannock are among a group of British holidaymakers taking legal action after a Caribbean dream destination turned into a holiday from hell.
More than 100 guests who stayed at the Paraiso Del Sol in Cabarate in the Dominican Republic, between December 2004 and February 2005, were struck down with stomach complaints and symptoms of sickness and diarrhoea, with at least one guest being admitted to intensive care at the resort.
Julie Pearse, aged 28, and her husband Tim, aged 43, from Great Wyrley, both lost a stone in weight after they were taken ill with gastroenteritis while holidaying at the resort in February.
Mrs Pearse, who works in personal hygiene services, said: "Tim was very ill while we were there and spent three days on a drip in our hotel room. A doctor came to see him and the look of horror on her face when she took Tim's temperature frightened me. It was 40C.
"She couldn't move him so she took a picture off the wall and attached a drip to the hook. That meant Tim couldn't go to the bathroom by himself so I had to un-hook it and go with him.
"But the hotel staff wouldn't even let me take food from the restaurant to our room. If I wanted to eat I had to leave Tim alone. I got no help from anybody.
"I thought two weeks in the Caribbean sounded wonderful but it turned into a nightmare. I went away to have a rest and recuperate and ended up more stressed than if I had been at work.
"We feel like we haven't had a holiday this year. It was just a waste of two weeks of our lives."
When the couple arrived at the resort, water was dripping from a lightbulb in their room. Mrs Pearse asked for it to be repaired, but ten days later it was still dripping.
She said: "I went down on the first morning and asked them to fix it or move us to another room but they did neither.
"On our first night the leg fell off the bed. I thought they had fixed it until I dropped something and bent down to pick it up. When I looked under the bed it had been propped up with a bin."
Mrs Pearse was admitted to Stafford General Hospital for three days with gastroenteritis when she came back, and had to take an additional two-and-a-half weeks off work. Her husband was also ill for a week on their return to the UK.
More than 100 holidaymakers who travelled to the Dominican Republic with Airtours are having their claims for compensation investigated by Irwin Mitchell Solicitors in Birmingham.
Many guests fell ill within a few days of arrival and were transferred from the Paraiso Del Sol to other hotels on the island. Some guests complained of cockroaches in the restaurant and claimed food was poorly cooked.
Suki Chhokar, partner with Irwin Mitchell, specialises in legal cases involving overseas accidents and illness. He said: "We have been contacted by a number of holidaymakers in relation to their holidays at the Paraiso del Sol and we are expecting inquires from others as it seems there has been a widespread problem at the hotel. We are also acting for clients who went to the hotel in August last year with another major tour operator, Odyssey Worldwide, who were also ill during their holiday.
"Every year we act for people who have been on holiday and who have suffered illness. Sadly, we have seen a recent increase in the number of cases arising out of holidays in the Dominican Republic."
A spokesman from Airtours said: "The matter is being investigated, we are very concerned and are looking into it."
The company also announced yesterday that it was dropping the hotel from its brochures after British tourists staged a walk-out following reports of loutish behaviour by local guests.
A spokeswoman said: "This hotel will not feature in our brochures next summer. It's not just this latest incident - there have been other problems."