A SUSPECTED outbreak of norovirus at the Sugar Hut is being investigated by Brentwood Council and Public Health England (PHE).

On New Year’s Eve, dozens of clubbers were hit with what is believed to be the winter vomiting bug, just 24 hours after the club's New Year's Eve bash, according to club bosses.

Guests, who paid £30 to get in, took to social media to complain about becoming violently sick the following day.

Brentwood Council confirmed the environmental health team and PHE are working together to investigate the reports of guests who have complained of feeling unwell after attending a New Years’ Eve event at the club.

A spokesman for Brentwood Council, said: “Brentwood Council’s environmental health officers received a number of complaints on Friday concerning individuals who had fallen ill following at a New Year’s Eve party at the Sugar Hut in Brentwood High Street.

"In conjunction with Public Health England, an investigation was launched to try and identify the source of the illness, which included symptoms of vomiting, diarrhoea and stomach cramps.

"The investigation into the cause is ongoing and on PHE and BBC’s advice the venue has been thoroughly disinfected as a precaution."

Dan Perrin, group music and events director at the club, posted a 700-word statement on Twitter stating it would be the club’s last public comment on the matter.

Mr Perrin said they would be deep cleaning the club and hit back at some customers who “got very nasty” about the incident.

He said: “Okay, so first up, if you are ill or have been ill since New Year’s Eve then it looks almost certain you have the norovirus.

“This is also the very likely case in all instances so far which is also the opinion of the authorities.

“If you would like confirmation of this for yourself then you will need to provide a sample to the council very soon as the bug only stays in your system for a few days.

“That’s the only way to test every case.”

Mr Perrin then went on to publish guidance from the NHS website on how norovirus can spread.

He continued: “In other words this is a contagious virus much like a common cold in that it spreads from person to person not from ice machines, air conditioning units, faulty dishwasher machines or poisoned drinks.”

Dr David Edwards from PHE’s East of England Health Protection Team, said: “Norovirus is an unpleasant stomach bug that causes vomiting and diarrhoea but it is rarely serious and usually goes away in about two days.

"We start to see norovirus outbreaks at this time of year in environments where people are mixing closely together and it can spread easily. One of the best ways to protect against norovirus is by practicing good hygiene. This includes thorough hand washing with soap and warm water after using the toilet and before eating or preparing foods.

"Most people will make a full recovery within 1-2 days but it is important to drink plenty of fluids during that time to prevent dehydration. We do advise people not to visit GP surgeries and hospitals with symptoms, but if they are concerned they should contact NHS 111 or talk to their GP by phone.”