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Baby on board

Railway staff are stepping up efforts to look after young mums onboard after a baby was born on a commuter service last month.

Baby Phoebe arrived on a Southeastern London Victoria to Ashford International service. Commuters onboard the 18.18 departure were surprised to hear driver Rob Friend put a call out for any medical staff over the tannoy.

The mother-to-be had gone into labour after boarding the train at Borough Green. Fortunately one of the passengers was a midwife and was able to assist. A nurse on board helped and an off-duty policeman also helped the conductor evacuate the carriage. The baby was born within thirty minutes at around 19:40.

Says Conductor Colin Brooker, ‘We had everyone we needed right there on the train. We were only missing a vicar to baptise the baby! I kept all the passengers on board informed about the delay and there was a big cheer when we announced the baby was born.’

Colin, a father of four added, ‘In all my 41 years working on the railway I’ve never experienced anything like this. It was amazing.’ The conductor and driver continued to work the rest of the evening shift which ended at one in the morning. Mother and child are doing well. Southeastern sent flowers.

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