British tourists in legionella outbreak win damages after outbreak

A group of British holidaymakers who contracted Legionnaires' disease at a Turkish hotel have been paid thousands of pounds in compensation, their lawyer said yesterday.

Nine people became ill and suffered breathing problems within days of arriving at the Grand Sarba 1 hotel in Icmeler, Turkey, in September and October 2004. Six of them were subsequently diagnosed with Legionnaires'. The victims sued the holiday firm Goldtrail and won a total of £120,000 in damages, said solicitors Irwin Mitchell.

Peter Maitland, 75, from Wrexham, was one of those affected by the disease. He said: "This holiday was supposed to be a time for myself and my wife to relax, however it was quite the opposite.

"A number of people suffered illness and still continue to suffer ongoing symptoms. I am appalled at the standards of hygiene at the hotel but I am pleased this nightmare has come to a conclusion."

Suki Chhokar , a spokesman for Irwin Mitchell said: "This was an especially serious outbreak of a potentially fatal disease. We are delighted our clients will receive the compensation they are rightly entitled to."

Legionnaires' disease is caused by bacteria found in water systems.

Goldtrail Holidays, based in New Malden, Surrey, said it had no comment.