Mothers, babies, midwives and doctors at Bradford Royal Infirmary welcomed a royal visitor into their midst on Tuesday 10th May as HRH The Princess Royal visited the maternity unit as part of her duty as patron of the Royal College of Midwives (RCM).
Princess Anne regally stopped by for a few hours at the midwife-led Birth Centre; the consultant-led labour ward, and the Snowdrop Bereavement Suite, meeting staff and talking to mothers about their experiences of birth.
The RCM President, Professor Lesley Page, and Chief Executive, Cathy Warwick – along with NHS staff and dignitaries – accompanied Her Royal Highness on her visit.
The visit highlighted the work being done by midwives and other members of the maternity team at the unit, to enhance pregnancy and birth experiences.
This included the Trust’s Better Start Bradford project which aims to improve outcomes for women in a deprived area of the city and the landmark Born in Bradford project – a cutting-edge research study tracking the lives of thousands of children born in the district.
Princess Anne especially focused on the RCM’s Better Births initiative which aims to encourage normality throughout pregnancy and birth for all women.
The initiative is working to increase access to midwifery-led continuity of care and to reduce maternal and newborn health inequalities.
Her Royal Highness also unveiled a plaque commemorating her visit.
Chief Executive of Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Professor Clive Kay said: “We are delighted that Her Royal Highness has chosen to visit our maternity services in her role as patron of the RCM.
“The staff very much looked forward to meeting her and they explain[ed] how we work with women and their families to provide highly valued, personalised care and choice in a safe and welcoming birth environment.”
Professor Kay continued: “Her Royal Highness also had the opportunity to tour our first-class maternity facilities and spoke with our dedicated and professional workforce.”
Commenting on the visit, Professor Lesley Page, president of the Royal College of Midwives, said: “This is an exceptional maternity team offering women, their babies and families excellent care. I am delighted that The Princess Royal made this visit to the Trust’s maternity unit.”