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Family blame Ashford Wetherspoon County Hotel pub for illness

By Aidan Barlow

A family claims a birthday celebration turned into a nightmare after their meal out ended with some of the party suffering from vomiting and diarrhoea.

The group of 18 had gone to The County Hotel in Ashford High Street in April this year to celebrate the 16th birthday of Chloe Gammon.

But half the group later complained of suffering symptoms such as stomach aches and fever.

The pair claim a Wetherspoon's meal made them sick. Stock image
The pair claim a Wetherspoon's meal made them sick. Stock image

JD Wetherspoon, which runs the County, said the company had fully investigated the incident and found no evidence linking the illnesses to the pub.

Miss Gammon said she had to miss several days of school after she woke up in the middle of the night feeling sick. Several of her friends at her birthday also had to take days off.

She said: “It was a disappointment. We had a really good night but woke up the next morning and felt terrible. On reflection it must have been the meal.”

Her aunt Louise Waller was also among the group. She said: “It was a nightmare really. Between 24 hours and 48 hours later eight of us experienced symptoms including vomiting, diarrhoea, fever and stomach cramps. We also have a confirmed case of norovirus.

“We believe there is a connection with what we ate. Wetherspoon conducted an investigation and said their premises is unlikely to be the cause.

The County Hotel in Ashford High Street.
The County Hotel in Ashford High Street.

“However, they didn’t assist us in obtaining samples and the investigation was done three weeks after the event.”

Mrs Waller says the group is now making a formal complaint to Ashford Borough Council.

A spokesman for JD Wetherspoon said the company was “fully aware” of the claims made by the party.

He added: “We have written on a number of occasions outlining the action the company took.

“The matter was fully investigated by independent supply chain auditors and they found no evidence linking the illness to our pub.

“We are aware that it took a number of weeks to get this response to the customer but that was because the matter was being fully investigated. As far as we are concerned the matter is closed.”

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