Families' joy as babies are born on New Year's Day in Portsmouth

THERE was joy all round as mums and dads welcomed their babies into the world on the most special of days – New Year’s Day.

Wednesday, 1st January 2020, 4:59 pm
Updated Wednesday, 1st January 2020, 5:45 pm

But January 1, 2020, will perhaps be even more special for new parents than a normal year with it also representing the start of a new decade.

Staff at Queen Alexandra Hospital’s maternity department reported that only five babies had been born on New year’s Day.

Nurses described the first day of the new decade as being ‘quiet’ – while also being at odds with a busy Christmas period where 10 babies were born on Christmas Day morning alone.

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Proud parents with their New Years day babies at Queen Alexandra Hospital, Cosham. Midwife Melanie Hardman with baby Grayson King. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (010120-3)

The first baby to be born at the hospital at the start of the new decade was Arthur Haley, who arrived at 12.30am weighing 8lb 10oz.

Mum Laura Butler and dad Luke Haley, both 29 who live in Cosham, could not have been prouder.

‘It was a long hard labour but was definitely worth it,’ Laura said. ‘I would do it again and again.

‘It’s been very tiring and we’ve not had much sleep but it’s very special for Arthur to be the first baby of the New Year to be born.’

Proud parents with their New Years day babies at Queen Alexandra Hospital, Cosham. Ashleigh Williams and Alex Raragowski with their daughter Annie Leigh Williams. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (010120-4)

Luke added: ‘It’s special because Arthur is the first of a new decade. He could have been the last of the last from the old decade but it is better this way.’

Baby Arthur pipped Woody White to being the first baby born at QA on New year’s Day with him arriving at 12.33am weighing 7lb 12oz.

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Emma and Ian White, of Southsea, said they were thrilled with their new arrival. ‘It was a long labour but Woody was good all the way through. It’s great to finally have him here with us,’ Emma, 32, said. ‘The staff were amazing and so supportive.’

Proud parents with their New Years day babies at Queen Alexandra Hospital, Cosham. Laura Butler and Luke Hayley with their son Arthur Hayley. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (010120-1)

Ian, 35, added: ‘The beginning of a new decade makes it more special. He was due to be born on January 9 but it is more special this way.’

Meanwhile Grayson King arrived at 12.43am weighing 7lb 3oz. Francesca Connick, 26, gave birth within 30 minutes of being induced. ‘I came in before Christmas and thought he would not be born until his due date on January 6. It all happened so quickly in the end but I’m happy it did on such a milestone,’ Francesca said.

Partner Steve King, 39, said: ‘Grayson will always have a party to go to now. I’m glad he’s been born on this day.’

While boys dominated the New Year’s Day births, Annie Leigh-Williams Raragowski was flying the flag for girl babies.

Despite a tough birth involving a caesarean and forceps that left a mark on her face, parents Ashleigh Williams, 28, and Alex Raragowski, 26, were over the moon with their new 7lb 11oz baby. ‘It’s been tough but we’re so pleased to have Annie here with us now,’ Ashleigh said.

Alex said: ‘We’ve hardly had any sleep for three days but it’s been worth the wait. The staff did a brilliant job.’

Midwife Melanie Hardman said: ‘It was a great day. We had a lot more babies than normal over Christmas but things have slowed down for New Year’s Day with it quieter than normal.

‘All babies are special but it is extra special to have babies born over Christmas and on New Year’s Day.’