THE parents of a girl struck down aged one by potentially-deadly salmonella poisoning on holiday in Turkey are battling for compensation, writes Sarah Dunn.
Daisy Edim suffered diarrhoea and dramatic weight loss - and was left unable to eat or drink properly for another five weeks after she returned home to High Green in Sheffield.
Her mum Michelle - who 10 years earlier worked as a travel rep at the same five-star hotel where Daisy began to feel ill - said her daughter still wears clothes meant for children nearly half her age due to the weight she lost.
“The holiday was a disaster and was particularly horrendous for poor Daisy,” said Michelle.
“She suffered from diarrhoea, loss of appetite, and in-turn nappy rash for another month after we got home. Salmonella is horrible enough for adults, let alone a little girl who doesn’t know why she is so ill. We took her to see our GP as soon as we got home, and after some tests he diagnosed her with salmonella. He also told us that, given the time frame of her condition, it was extremely likely the illness had been contracted in the hotel.”
Michelle claimed the five-star Sheraton Voyager hotel in Antalya “showed an utter disregard for basic health and safety standards” during their stay.
“I used to work as a tour rep myself, so I know exactly the rights and wrongs of how food should be cooked and served at a holiday resort,” she said.
“Food was left uncovered and served lukewarm.
“Fresh food was placed on top of stale remnants.
“Pest control was also a real problem. Cats were roaming around both the kitchen and restaurant, and I had to constantly keep my daughter away from them.”
Michelle, husband Seb, plus Daisy and sons Zak, eight, and Noah, six, stayed at the Sheraton Voyager for only one night, after being moved there when their flight home was delayed for 26 hours.
The 33-year-old health care support worker said the stay ruined their two-week holiday.
Michelle is now demanding answers and has sought advice from Sheffield-based solicitors Irwin Mitchell.
Nearly a year on from the nightmare trip with holiday firm Thomas Cook last May, Daisy - now two-and-a-half - is fully recovered, although still wears clothes meant for children aged 18 months due to her weight loss.
A spokesman for Thomas Cook said: ”We take reports of any illness very seriously and are undertaking a full investigation with the hotel and our resort team.
“We are continuing to liaise with the solicitor representing the family and are awaiting further information.”