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Bride left heartbroken after series of disastrous errors sees Jamaican dream wedding cancelled - 11th September 2014

A couple’s dream wedding in Jamaica was left in ruins after a series of catastrophic errors with their booking.

Katie Carrick, 28, was overjoyed when her fiancée Stephen Bell, 45, popped the question on Christmas Eve and suggested that they tie the knot in the Caribbean.

But their hopes for a beautiful wedding were dashed after a number of errors were made after booking with their provider, Thomas Cook, which forced them to abandon their big day.

The couple, from Sunderland, spent almost £5,000 on their upcoming nuptials and were set to marry at the Sunset Jamaica Grande Resort & Spa in Ocho Rios, Jamaica on 27 October.

But their holiday was cancelled when Thomas Cook announced that the hotel had been closed. Bride-to-be Katie, who works as a carer, eventually found another location in Jamaica, The Bahia Principe hotel.

She thought that it would be perfect, even though it would cost the couple more. But luck wasn’t on their side as those plans were also ruined.

The travel agent’s promises of a date for the wedding failed to materialise and the wedding department at the hotel knew nothing of their booking.

Katie, who is mum to eight-year-old Connor, said: ‘I am completely devastated that our big day has been completely ruined.

‘I cried and cried in the travel agents. I felt as though we had no other choice than to cancel the entire wedding.

‘I was heartbroken. I spent £250 on my wedding dress and was absolutely thrilled with it. I couldn’t wait for Stephen to see me walk down the aisle in the dress of my dreams, but now I have had to put it away in the closet at my mum’s house.

‘I was over the moon when Stephen proposed, it was so romantic, it was a perfect Christmas present and we were desperate to get married abroad and in 2014. ‘Now the thought of getting married doesn’t feel exciting any more. It’s not the occasion I had always dreamed of.’

The fourth and most expensive option was ruled out when the unhappy couple’s bridesmaid and best man could not afford to attend and were then hit by a bereavement.

Katie complained to the tour operator who have refunded her the £3,800 that the family paid for the holiday and the wedding ceremony.

But she claims that she was not given a reasonable excuse for the wedding date not being confirmed or a realistic alternative option by Thomas Cook when the plans fell through.

‘What was meant to be a happy occasion, planning the best day of our lives has turned into the worst,’ Katie said.

‘The fact that this has gone on since we booked the wedding in January has left me stressed, fighting depression and has affected my work as I need time off.

‘We managed to receive all of the money that we paid for the holiday back but it does not compensate for the fact that Stephen and I were supposed to be married at the end of October and now we are not.

‘We had bought the rings, the suits, a bridesmaid dress and paid for decorations, it is such a huge shame. I went through hell and the amount of time we spent in the travel agents was a joke.

‘It’s safe to say that we will not be using Thomas Cook again.’

A spokesperson for Thomas Cook said,’ Thomas Cook would like to apologise to Ms Carrick with regards to the service she received when recently making her wedding arrangements with us.

‘It is never our intention to disappoint our customers, and we are sorry that we fell short of Ms Carrick’s expectations in this instance.

Due to an operational change at the original hotel, Thomas Cook were no longer in a position to be able to offer Ms Carrick her first choice of venue.

Thomas Cook sought to make alternative arrangements for the Carrick party. However, none of the proposed venues were either available during the selected dates of travel or deemed by the customers to be suitable for their wedding requirements, despite these being of the same, like-for-like level as Ms Carrick’s original choice of hotel.

Thomas Cook can confirm that Ms Carrick has cancelled her booking with us, and we have fully reimbursed her the deposit paid.

‘We understand that Ms Carrick and her fiancée are now no longer seeking to marry abroad and are in the process of making arrangements for a UK wedding.

‘We will be providing the couple with a gesture of goodwill by way of apology, and we would like to wish Ms Carrick and her future husband the very best in their married life together.

Article Reproduced from Mail Online