Meet one of the first babies to be born during the coronavirus lockdown

Caroline Allen
Contributor
Millie was born a short while after Boris Johnson announced the lockdown. (SWNS)

Millie Eliza Best is one of the first babies to be born during the coronavirus lockdown.

Her mum, Chelsea Best, 28, gave birth to her just a short while after Boris Johnson announced the nationwide coronavirus restrictions.

Chelsea was informed the the country had gone into lockdown by her midwife. She was already having regular contractions at the time.

Millie arrived into the world at 11.38pm on 23 March at Northampton General Hospital, weighing 7lbs 11oz.

A shot of the newborn with her dad. (SWNS)
Millie with her mum, Chelsea. (SWNS)

Because of the restrictions, dad, Matt Best, 30, could only spend an hour with his newborn daughter.

He then had to come back during reduced visiting times (between 6pm and 7pm) the following day.

Read more: Pregnancy is changing during coronavirus outbreak

The pair were able to take their daughter home on 25 March but because of social distancing rules, they haven’t been able to introduce her to any of their friends and family.

Chelsea, from Corby, Northants, was in labour for a total of 25 hours and the couple said they were kept up to date on the latest coronavirus developments by midwives during this time.

They even told her while she was pushing that Boris had announced a full lockdown.

Read more: NCT starts virtual antenatal classes

“The midwives told us an hour before the birth we had gone into lockdown.

“At the time I’d been having gas and air for pain relief but I can really remember them saying ‘we are now in lockdown’ and thinking about the implications for my husband knowing that he would not be able to stay.

“We didn’t know if he was going to be stopped by police on the way home. It was a surreal experience, but amazing nonetheless.

“After Millie was born he had about an hour with her, then it was just me on my own.” Chelsea explained.

Read more: Could coronavirus lead to a rise in home births?

The pair explained that their birth experience has been “very different” given the fact that nobody has been able to meet their newborn daughter.

“It is an emotional and demanding time having a baby and not being able to show everyone what you have brought into the world and not knowing when you will be able to.

“But it has been amazing that we have had the chance to bond as just the three of us, getting to know Millie’s likes and dislikes.”

At the hospital with their newborn. (SWNS)
Millie is now safe and sound at home. (SWNS)

The couple praised the “incredible” NHS staff throughout their unique experience and joined the rest of the UK to clap for the staff on their doorsteps.

“The NHS staff were brilliant and I can’t thank them enough, especially the midwives who were amazing.

“They were so supportive when I was on my own in the hospital and were constantly checking on me.

“I’m so grateful to them for the risks they are taking just being in the hospitals with coronavirus around. It must be so scary for them.” Chelsea said.