Page last updated at 13:49 GMT, Friday, 18 December 2009

Ship passengers fall ill on Gran Canaria cruise

Passengers return after 12 days on the ship

Scores of cruise ship passengers are recovering after falling ill on a 12-day trip to Gran Canaria.

Some 180 passengers and crew contracted sickness and diarrhoea on board Fred Olsen's vessel Boudicca, which returned to Portsmouth earlier on Friday.

A company spokeswoman said only 20 were still ill by the time it docked. There were 1,152 people on board.

The ship is due to sail again later on Friday on a four-night mini-cruise to Zeebrugge and Amsterdam.

'Fastidious hygiene'

The vessel left Portsmouth on Sunday 6 December, calling at Madeira, La Gomera, Tenerife, Gran Canaria, and Lisbon.

A spokeswoman for Fred Olsen said: "In accordance with guidelines set down by the Health Protection Agency, staff throughout Boudicca have stepped up their already fastidious hygiene and disinfecting regime.

"Prior to the ship embarking on her next cruise, a thorough cleaning and disinfecting of the vessel will be undertaken, so her departure will be slightly delayed.

"This will not in any way affect the itinerary of her next cruise."

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