AN ASHINGTON baby was in such a hurry to arrive for Easter that he was born in the Accident and Emergency Department at Worthing Hospital last Thursday, with no time for his mother to reach the maternity ward.
Alex English, weighing in at 7lbs 2.5 ounces, was born at 9.18pm, less than one-and-a-half hours after his mother Lee had her first contraction.
Lee, 39, an evidential property assistant at Horsham Police Station, and her husband Rob, 42, a pest controller and gardener for local company RDA Gardens, were taken by surprise by the speed of his arrival.
Lee started with contractions at 7pm last Thursday and at first thought nothing of it, because her baby’s due date was two days later, on Easter Saturday.
But she said: “Within 15 minutes they were only three minutes apart and I knew from when our first so I knew from when our first son, Luke was born, that things were happening far too quickly.”
Husband Rob said: “It looked like a home birth was imminent but thankfully a paramedic soon arrived at our home address with much needed pain relief of gas and air and was later followed by an Ambulance that transported us to Worthing Hospital.
“There was no time to make it up to the Maternity Ward so baby Alex was safely delivered in the Accident and Emergency department at 9.18pm.”
Both sets of grandparents had been at the couple’s home during the evening as events unfolded.
Rob added: “Thankfully, one grandma was a retired nurse who had previously completed midwifery training and it was a bit like ‘Call The Midwife’ with talk of towels, hot water and sterilising thread to tie the cord off.”
But in the event the ambulance arrived in time to get Lee to Worthing Hospital - but there was still no time to get her up to the maternity ward.
“In the ambulance I was being told not to push which was extremely difficult because Alex was in such a big hurry to arrive.
“I’ve never been known for doing anything quickly in my family, and this was a first for me!” said Lee.
Both Lee and Rob praised the paramedic, ambulance crew and the 999 operator for their superb help and also the two midwives who helped deliver the baby in the A&E department.
“Although we had already decided on the name Alex, someone pointed out that his initials are A.E. and he was born in A and E!” said Rob.
Alex is now the younger brother to a very proud older brother Luke, aged three.