AS the world celebrated the start of a new year, two High Peak families had twice the reason to celebrate.
For Buxton couple Sarah and Glenn Mellor and Chapel couple Vanessa and Paul Verity, 2012 got off to a fantastic start after they both welcomed daughters at Buxton’s Corbar Birth Centre – with both little ones arriving earlier than expected.
But the safe arrivals mark the end of an era for Corbar, as the last festive babies to be born there after health bosses agreed to close the much-loved facility from July 1.
Sarah and Glenn’s daughter Annabelle Mellor arrived at 11.08am on New Year’s Day weighing six pounds seven ounces. And Sarah, 31, had nothing but praise for the staff at Corbar, where she also gave birth to her daughter Amelia six years ago.
“I’ve got two other children who I had to have at Stepping Hill so I was insistent when I had Amelia that I was going to have her at Corbar,” she said. “The experience was so marvellous when I had Amelia that I wasn’t going to have Annabelle anywhere else. It’s just so nice there.
“For quite a long time into my pregnancy up until just a few weeks ago I was worried it was going to be closed before July so I wouldn’t have been able to go there. It’s such a shame.
“I was shocked when I first realised I’d gone into labour on New Year’s Day but we think she definitely planned it.”
And Annabelle, who made her entrance just under a week before Sarah’s due date of January 7, is settling into life at home with her family, including brother Jordan, 12 and sister Shannon, 10, on Forest Avenue.
Little Kathryn Faith Verity kept her parents waiting a little longer, arriving at 6.54pm on New Year’s Day, a whole 11 days earlier than mum Vanessa’s due date.
But Kathryn, who weighed eight pounds ten ounces, almost came even earlier because Vanessa’s waters broke on New Years Eve.
“We had a long wait but it was nice to have her on the first of the first,” proud mum Vanessa, 30, said.
Vanessa also praised the care she received at Corbar, where she used the birthing pool. “The atmosphere is just brilliant,” she said.
“And the staff are superb. It’s such a shame the decision has been made to close it. Even the way they look after other people and not just the mum in labour is fantastic. They are so understanding with everyone else.”
Little Kathryn joins her parents Vanessa and Paul, 42, on Burnside Avenue in Chapel, as well as other family members Elizabeth, ten, Macey, six and Jennifer, six.