Dad delivers baby daughter in Barnstaple street

Proud parents Sarah Scott and Jason Burmingham are pictured with baby Phoebe and her big brother Oll

Proud parents Sarah Scott and Jason Burmingham are pictured with baby Phoebe and her big brother Olly. - Credit: Archant

Shocked couple tell of their incredible Friday night on the town – with a difference!

Mum Sarah Scott and dad Jason Burmingham are pictured with baby Phoebe and her brother Olly outside

Mum Sarah Scott and dad Jason Burmingham are pictured with baby Phoebe and her brother Olly outside their home in Sticklepath Terrace, Barnstaple. - Credit: Archant

A BARNSTAPLE mum and dad have spoken of their shock – and then joy – after their baby girl was born in the street outside their home.

Quick mover: Baby Phoebe is pictured tucked up in the maternity ward at North Devon District Hospita

Quick mover: Baby Phoebe is pictured tucked up in the maternity ward at North Devon District Hospital just hours after her arrival in a Barnstaple street. - Credit: Archant

A Friday night on the town took on a whole new meaning for Sarah Scott and fiancé Jason Burmingham when Sticklepath Terrace became a makeshift delivery suite for new arrival Phoebe Grace.

The 7lb 3oz infant was literally ‘caught’ by dad Jason at 8.05pm on Friday as he tried in vain to help his panicked partner into their car.

It’s a remarkable matter of minutes that will stay with the couple for the rest of their lives.


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Sarah, 27, had been sent home from hospital just two hours before and told to take a bath and return when her contractions became more regular.

But no one could have predicted what was to follow, especially Sarah, whose first child, Olly, three, was born after a six-hour labour.

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She said: “The contractions became painful and constant very quickly and I just said to Jason ‘you’ve got to get me to hospital now – this baby’s coming’.

“We called my sister Gemma to ask her to come round and look after Olly but by the time she turned up Phoebe was ready to come – it all happened so fast.”

And by the time Network Rail worker Jason, also 27, had helped Sarah to the car, the baby’s head was already showing – two days early.

“I was pretty scared – I just wanted to get Sarah to hospital but I couldn’t believe it when I saw the baby’s head,” he said.

“I told Sarah to get in the car but she said ‘I can’t I’ll sit on the baby’s head’.”

Gravity did the rest, and with the baby safely gathered in her dad’s arms, they waited for the ambulance to arrive, the neighbours apparently unaware of the drama that had unfolded on their doorsteps.

“It was freezing cold and we all just stood there and hugged each other,” said Sarah, who works as a sales executive at the North Devon Gazette.

“I took my top off to wrap around the baby and the ambulance arrived about five minutes later.”

The proud father was able to eventually cut the umbilical chord in the ambulance.

“I was so embarrassed but just glad Phoebe was OK,” said Sarah.

“It was as undignified and unladylike as you could ever imagine but on the plus side it was quick and she’s absolutely fine.

“It’s just a good job it didn’t happen earlier in the day when all the college students were walking past as I’d probably be a YouTube sensation by now!

“Only a couple of days before, I was watching a television programme where a woman had to deliver her own baby in hospital and I thought to myself ‘how crazy is that?’. Now I think at least she was in a hospital, not in Sticklepath Terrace, out in the road!”

The couple, who are engaged to be married in April next year, said friends and family couldn’t believe it when they first told them what had happened.

As far as public record goes, Phoebe’s birth certificate states ‘outside parents’ home’ as the place of birth and that she was delivered by her father.

“When we got to the hospital the midwives said ‘congratulations, you’re our hero and heroine of the night’,” added Sarah.

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