First birth on remote island for 76 years
A baby has been born on a remote island off the British coast for the first time since 1937.
Little Thea Windridge-Hicks arrived 76 years after the last birth on St Agnes, in the Isles of Scilly.
A midwife had to take a boat from the mainland to the island – population 72 – after Grace Windridge, 24, went into labour while having a bath.
Pregnant women living on the islands normally travel to St Mary's, the largest of the islands, or Cornwall to give birth, as there are no doctors or hospitals on St Agnes.
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But parents Grace and Aiden Hicks, 24, who have a three-year-old son Joss, had planned a home birth.
The last person to have been born on St Agnes was Janice Nicholas, 76, who moved from the island several years ago.
Delighted Grace said: "It was absolutely fantastic and went exactly how we wished it to. It felt extra special being able to give birth to our little girl on the island where we plan to bring her up.
"Because my first labour was so quick we thought it best to plan the birth at home as we would have had to get a helicopter to the hospital on the mainland.
"It's really fortunate we did as there is no way we would have been able to get to the mainland in time for Thea to be born."
Relaxed Grace went into labour while having a bath on October 5 and she called her fiance Aiden, an electrician, who took her into the living room. He called midwife Annie, who is stationed at St Mary's, who got a boat to the island as soon as possible and arrived just in time.
Baby Thea was born on the couple's living room floor at around 1pm on October 5 weighing a healthy 7lb 12oz. Grace added: "We thought at one point that Aiden would have to deliver the baby himself as everything was happening so fast.
"But we had a home birthing kit ready and Annie told Aiden exactly what to do so we felt fully prepared. Aiden was fantastic and managed to stay very calm until Annie got to us. It felt so special to give birth at home as it meant Joss was able to come over straight after to meet his little sister. Aiden was bought up on the island so has a lot of family here who were also able to meet Thea very soon after birth."
Grace is originally from Leicester and the engaged couple met when Grace got a summer job on the island aged 16.
The tiny island of St Agnes is the southernmost populated island of the Isles of Scilly and is only one mile long.