Music fan still has suspected food poisoning a month after eating at festival

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-Credit: (Image: SWNS)

A music fan has told of how he is still suffering from suspected food poisoning almost a month after eating from a food vendor at a UK festival. Daniel Fitzsimmons, 27, says he started feeling sick and had diarrhoea after eating a pulled pork Yorkshire pudding at Download Festival in Castle Donington, Leicestershire, which ran from June 13-15 this year.

He was forced to return home from the three-day music event a day early and even had to contact his GP for advice with the suspected food poisoning. Now three weeks later, Daniel continues to suffer from a 'bad stomach', had ongoing diarrhoea and has struggled with work as a production engineer due to urgency.

"I’d been looking forward to Download for a while, as my favourite band Limp Bizkit were performing," he said. "Sadly, however, I didn’t get to see them as I fell ill the first day after eating a pulled pork Yorkshire pudding.

"It was covered in mashed potato and gravy, and while it wasn’t great or very hot, I didn’t really think much of it at the time. It was only when others started complaining of being unwell that I began thinking it could be the food."

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Daniel Fitzsimmons returned home from the three-day event a day early and contacted his GP for advice -Credit:SWNS

Daniel, of Attleborough, Norfolk, says the event 'didn't give off the best impression' because there was lots of mud and overflowing toilets. He said: "The festival really didn’t give off the best impression anyway, due to all the mud and overflowing toilets.

"But to then become sick was the final straw for me and I left early. I’m still not right and I feel like everyone that’s suffered deserve some answers, at least to help prevent it happening again in the future."

James Grange, 28, also attended the event and started vomiting and had diarrhoea after eating a burger on the first day of the event. He was picked up from the festival two days early and was forced to call NHS 111 for advice on his journey to his home in Chesterfield, Derbyshire.

James’ symptoms continued for several days and he’s still suffering from ongoing diarrhoea and nausea and feels light-headed. The customer service advisor said: "I’m not usually one to get sick and I think I have quite a robust stomach.

"But shortly after eating at Download, I was very unwell. The burger I had did taste a bit off and was only lukewarm, but I didn’t really link it all together until I heard of everyone else falling ill."

Tents set up in a muddy field
Conditions at Download Festival in Castle Donington -Credit:SWNS

James says the toilets at the festival were 'disgusting' and he believes this made the situation worse.

He said: "I suspect the whole situation was made worse by the disgusting state of the toilets – which I complained about - and the fact that the hand sanitiser ran out and wasn’t replaced.

"The hygiene in general was very poor at this year’s festival, which I feel is unacceptable for such a large event. It’s really worrying how many people were affected and something needs to be done to stop it happening again."

Jatinder Paul, a specialist public health lawyer at Irwin Mitchell representing Daniel and James, has encouraged anyone else who became ill at the event to come forward. He said: "The reports we’ve heard of the problems at Download Festival, and the first-hand accounts from Daniel, James and others, are deeply concerning.

"To hear that the organisers closed down two food stands indicates the scale of the issue. It’s been further reported that more than 500 people attending the festival have been affected by illness.

"The scale of the problem is concerning and really not something you’d expect from such a high-profile event. Gastric illness is serious and the impact of it should never be downplayed. In some cases, it can lead to long-term health complications.

"Live Nation has confirmed it’s now investigating the outbreak and it’s vital that if any issues are identified, lessons are learned to ensure something like this doesn’t happen again. We’d also like to speak to anyone affected to help with our own enquiries."

Download Festival has been contacted for a comment.