A HOLIDAY resort has been forced to close because of an outbreak of a winter vomiting bug.
Holidaymakers hoping for a relaxing pre-Christmas break at the Sinah Warren Hotel, in Hayling Island, were struck down with highly contagious norovirus which is sweeping the UK.
It was hit with the bug on Wednesday and around 50 guests were affected.
The complex closed yesterday for a deep clean and guests who had not fallen ill were moved to other hotels on the island.
A spokesman for Warner Leisure, which owns the hotel, said: 'Some guests have gone down with the winter vomiting bug but they have now gone home.
'The hotel has closed and the other guests have been moved to other hotels because there is plenty of availability at the moment.
'There is a thorough cleaning programme being carried out and we're very confident that the hotel will reopen within the next few days.
'There was a party due in but they have also been moved to another hotel.'
Guests began showing signs of the illness on Tuesday and that became a full-scale outbreak by Wednesday evening.
Environmental health officers at Havant Borough Council have been informed of the situation.
Holiday resorts are particularly vulnerable to norovirus as large groups of people descend on them every winter to take advantage of tinsel and turkey weekends.
In December 2007 hundreds of guests at Lakeside Coastal Resort got the bug.
The powerful bug can last for up to a week and cause extreme vomiting, diarrhoea, dehydration, aching limbs and stomach cramps.
It is particularly virulent in the winter and medics have warned people to stay away from hospitals if they think they have the bug for fear of spreading it to already weak patients.
People suffering with the norovirus or flu-like symptoms are advised to stay at home, rest and drink plenty of fluids. They can also contact NHS Direct, or check symptoms online at the NHS Direct website.
The NHS is also offering online advice on how to stay healthy this winter.