A proud dad has told how he delivered his newborn baby in the car park of a nature reserve – and had it listed as his daughter’s official birthplace.
Andrew Still, 32, had to pull over on the way to the hospital and help wife Sara, 31, deliver baby Eliza as she began to emerge.
He stopped at Lochwinnoch Nature Reserve in Lochwinnoch, Renfrewshire, where the tot was born, and had to wrap her in a picnic blanket until medics arrived.
Baby Eliza, the couple’s second child, arrived safely weighing 5lbs 14oz and her proud parents even had the nature reserve put on her birth certificate.
The pair said their hypnobirthing lessons helped during the dramatic delivery.
Stay at home dad Andrew said: “It was a bit overwhelming.
“It’s something nobody expects to do.
“It’s still not really sunk in that it actually happened.
“With Covid going on there’s a lot of people we haven’t seen and are still telling people about it.
“I think the hypnobirthing classes put us in a more settled state.”
The couple, from Largs, North Ayrshire, were on their way to Royal Alexandra Hospital in Paisley, Renfrewshire when Sara told Andrew to stop the car.
Sara said brave Andrew was tempted to ‘put the foot down’ to make it to the hospital but stopped at the popular bird watching reserve and called an ambulance instead.
Civil servant Sara, also mum to Ezra, aged three, said the experience wasn’t traumatic and was glad it worked out the way it did.
Sara said: “My husband got our wee boy ready for nursery and we had breakfast but within half an hour I started getting contractions.
“I phoned Andrew and said ‘we’ve got to go to the hospital’.
“By the time we set off I told Andrew we weren’t going to make it and he’ll need to stop.
“The temptation was there to put the foot down but he pulled over and phoned the ambulance.
“Andrew said he felt quite panicked but I thought he was good.
“In hindsight he’s so glad he did it.
“We only had picnic blankets and wrapped her [Eliza] up until the ambulance crew arrived.
“It was quite peaceful.
“At that time in the morning nobody was around.
“It wasn’t traumatic, and I wouldn’t have had it any other way.
“A lot of our friends have said their partners would have fainted if that was them.
“In the hypnobirthing he had a big part to play.
“I expected to be in hospital with everything around me but the hypnobirthing helped a lot with the birthing techniques and there’s a relaxation CD I listen to in the car.
“I don’t plan on having any more children but I loved giving birth.”
An RSPB Lochwinnoch spokesman said: “We would like to share our congratulations once again with the family.
“It was great to meet all four when they returned to the reserve and we are delighted that mother and baby are doing well.”