Baby Justin James was given an extra special welcome by midwives at a birthing unit because he was the 3,000th baby to arrive there.
New mum Marie Davis, 29, gave birth to Justin at the end of the April, marking a milestone for the unit at the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow.
The birth went smoothly and Justin was born weighing 9lb 3oz. He was allowed home the following day.
Marie said: “My waters broke at 4am but I took a couple of Paracetamol and stayed at home for as long as possible. I got to the hospital just 20 minutes before Justin arrived so in the end the labour moved very quickly. I’m so overjoyed that I already feel like I could do it all again.”
Midwives, Julie Read and Natalie Cornell assisted in the delivery and husband Scott and mum Janet were also in the unit offering support.
The home from home birthing unit was opened in 2007 to provide an alternative location from the hospital ward for women in labour. Over 20 per cent of the hospital’s births now take place there, freeing up beds in the hospital’s main labour ward for more high risk births.
The aim of the centre is to provide a relaxed, midwife-led environment in an attempt to avoid medical intervention. There are three birthing pools at the unit.
The rooms also have birthing stools, balls and tension ropes and women are encouraged to relax with essential oils, music and flame free candles.