One Born Every Minute is a ground-breaking documentary series looking at the drama and emotion of a maternity unit, from the perspective of the parents-to-be and the maternity ward staff.
Every minute of every hour of every day, a baby is born in Britain. Better than a soap or drama series, this is the real drama of everyday life. One Born Every Minute captures the dramatic, emotional and often funny moments that accompany bringing new life into the world. The intimate footage gives a unique inside view of what it is really like when life begins.
Using state of the art technology, forty cameras were placed around the maternity ward in Princess Anne Hospital in Southampton, UK. Filming from the reception desk to the neo-natal ward; from the operating theatre to the birthing pool this eight-part documentary captures those dramatic, tender and heart-warming moments shared between families - whether a mother of four or a first time pregnancy, and dispels the mysteries of childbirth.
Episode 1: Wednesday, 5th October at 8.30pm on SBS ONE
In this opening episode, two sets of expectant parents are waiting to meet their babies, including teenage sweethearts Ralph and Janet, who fell in love on their last day at school together, and Paul and his wife Stephanie, who warns 'I'm a real wimp when it comes to pain!"
Janet and Ralph (both 18) fell in love after meeting at school and have now been together for exactly 'One year, two months and 27 days" according to Ralph. When Janet became pregnant at 17 Ralph says: 'It was a shock, but you can't say it was a sad event." And that now he 'couldn't be happier."
Twenty-two year old Stephanie says: 'I'm a real wimp when it comes to pain" adding 'I wouldn't say I was a drama queen… but my friends would say I was a drama queen. And my mum would too, probably." Husband Paul (28) and the midwives attempt to calm an increasingly vocal Stephanie as her screams reverberate around the hospital. The midwives explain that women express themselves in very different ways throughout labour.
With both Paul and Ralph supporting the mums through childbirth, veteran midwives Kay and Barbara say that men coming in to the delivery room is a relatively recent phenomenon. Barbara adds that before she became a midwife she'd never seen a man cry and they both agree that when a man cries in the delivery room it's a great sign and usually means he'll be a good dad. Their favourite moment is when they can say to a new dad, 'go and meet your baby now."
Episode 2: Wednesday, 12th October at 8.30pm on SBS ONE
For Lydia (22) and Phil (22) a surprise pregnancy caused the couple to think long and hard about what they should do next. After finally telling her mother, whom she feared would frown on a baby born outside of marriage, Lydia is now looking forward to being a mum and has a natural water birth planned. Boyfriend Phil was at first reluctant to be a dad – he lived a party lifestyle and initially felt sad about saying goodbye to it. When the baby is due to arrive, Lydia's squeamish elder sister Anna joins her and Phil in the birthing room.
Tendayi (30) and Maxwell (42) decide laughter is the best way to endure a long labour. To pass the time, Maxwell reads to his wife from the Compendium of Fascinating Female Facts, small gems like: -British women would rather give up sex than chocolate'. Tendayi jokes she doesn't know which she would choose. She's hoping for a natural birth, 'I just want to get on with it and push the baby out", though the screams from other women giving birth soon begin to un-nerve her. Maxwell is hoping that when the baby does come, it will be the son he has always wanted.
Meanwhile in a neighbouring room Kate (29) says, 'I never thought babies would be on the cards." She adds: 'Being with Nick, who didn't want children, I thought one day…I might be able to convince him to have cats". Nick (35) explains: 'I never wanted kids for a long time, but then one day something changed." Now Nick and Kate await the birth of their first baby.