Couple recall care daughter received at the Special Care Baby Unit at Hinchingbrooke Hospital in Huntingdon

Amelia after she was born.

Amelia after she was born. - Credit: Archant

Adam and Claire Scott were not expecting the arrival of their first baby until early February – but the baby had her own plans.

Amelia as a happy two-year-old.

Amelia as a happy two-year-old. - Credit: Archant

Just 31 weeks into the pregnancy little Amelia was born at Hinchingbrooke’s maternity ward where Claire had gone just to get checked out because she was not feeling too well. That was on December 3, 2012 – nine weeks before the due date.

As the couple, from Alconbury Weston, marked Amelia’s second birthday they recalled her unexpected arrival and the staff at Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust’s Special Care Baby Unit (SCBU) whose support helped them through the tough weeks that followed her birth.

Adam, 33, said: “The baby had been kicking at the ribs all the while that Claire was carrying her. So when that changed we thought the baby was simply kicking at her bladder. We didn’t realise it was Claire’s waters breaking over a two day period.”

When Claire went in to the hospital the next day the medical team were deciding if she was going to stay in for overnight observation or be sent home to rest when a senior doctor told the shocked couple that the baby was on her way.

“There was no warning; we were completely taken by surprise, and before we knew it we were in the delivery suite,” said Adam.

Within minutes, after a “very brief cuddle” by mum and dad Amelia was whisked off to SCBU.

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Adam said: “I stayed with Claire for a few minutes to make sure she was okay, then I went down to SCBU. Amelia was in an incubator with all sorts of tubes and wires and all manner of machines bleeping and buzzing.

“I was in a daze. It was like I was not there and was watching it happen to someone else. I then went back to see Claire with a couple of baby photos.”

Claire and Adam spent their baby’s first Christmas and new year with her in SCBU.

“When we arrived on Christmas Day, Santa had already been and there were presents for the baby,” he said. “On New Year’s Eve, we went in at 11.30pm so we could see in the new year as a family. The nurses produced a bottle of sparkling elderflower water and we toasted the new year with Amelia.

“The staff were wonderful. They helped us through a very difficult time.”

Claire, 31, made up her mind not to dwell on what went wrong and decided to “just get on with it”.

She said: “The guys at SCBU were fantastic and our families were really great. We got ourselves involved in caring for Amelia rather than worrying about a situation we could not change.”

On January, 16, 2013 the couple were finally able to take Amelia home.

Ameila celebrated her second birthday earlier this month and the couple say she is doing so well that you’d never know she was born nine weeks early.

The weeks they spent at SCBU, they say, are ones they will never forget. But their memories are happy ones – thanks to the dedicated team of doctors and nurses who provide round the clock care.

n Dreamdrops raises money to provide the extras that public funds cannot afford but which parents and babies who use the Special Care Baby Unit benefit from. It has teamed up with The Hunts Post for a Christmas appeal. To donate to Dreamdrops visit or send cheques made payable to Huntingdonshire Children’s Charity to Vivien Golding, Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust, Unit 3, Meadow Lane, St Ives, PE27 4LG.