By Wendy Williams

A BRITISH woman has been left with a broken skull and severe burns after an explosion at a Marbella hotel.

Carol Gardener, 53, was left unconscious after being hit by a steam pipe which exploded outside the Cortijo Blanco hotel.

Her friend Julie Loud, 45, also suffered a serious leg injury in the blast.

The blast happened as the two women and their husbands, from Weston-super-Mare, walked along a side street next to the three-star hotel on their way to the beach in Puerto Banus.

Andy Loud, who was walking ahead of the women at the time of the explosion, said at first he thought a bomb had gone off.

“There was this huge bang and the ground shook and I was covered in clouds of dust which blocked off everything,” he said.

“Pete and I called out Carol’s name but we didn’t get a reply. When the dust cleared I saw her lying unconscious on the ground by the steam pipes.

“There was blood streaming out of her head and leg.”

Carol was airlifted to a hospital in Malaga where she is said to be in a critical condition and on a ventilator.

Her two children Darren and Tanya have flown to Spain to be with her and her husband Pete, 56.


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