It’s every mum-to-be’s worst nightmare – not making it to the hospital in time to give birth to your baby.
But that’s exactly the scenario Victoria Johnson, 28, found herself in last month.
The second-time-mum was on her way to Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) when she went into labour sooner than planned.
The couple, from Starston, Norfolk, were only about 10 minutes into their hospital journey when it became obvious they weren’t going to make it.
“There were two minutes of utter panic,” Victoria said. “We had to accept this was happening; we were in the middle of nowhere.”
In the end Victoria’s husband Edward, 31 had to deliver the baby using his wife’s dressing gown, which they had brought with them for their hospital stay.
While on speakerphone to the emergency services operator and waiting for an ambulance to arrive next to the filed they were parked, Edward delivered their baby and used the dressing gown belt to tie the umbilical cord.
It took just ten minutes from Victoria’s waters breaking until the arrival of their newborn.
“Edward was then told by the operator to tie a shoelace around the umbilical cord. But he was wearing laceless boots and I was wearing flip-flops,” Victoria explained.
“We had an iPhone charger, but that was no good. Then Edward ran to the boot of the car and pulled out the tie from my dressing gown.”
By the time an ambulance arrived Edward had already delivered baby Edith safely.
“It was my wife’s utter calmness throughout the process that made it possible for me.” Edward told the Eastern Daily Press.
“We always said it’s our worst nightmare to get caught like that – we thought we left in plenty of time.
“I think it was going over the hump-back bridge that finally did it.
Speaking about the special moment he delivered his newborn, the new father said:
“I think as a father the moment that I had to catch the baby as she was coming out was the most memorable, but also looking at the amount of space my wife had in the front seat of the car, because the seats didn’t fold down.
“Both of us think it’s lovely it happened that way, and Edith’s settled in really well.”
Edward isn’t the only dad who has gone over and above his parenthood duties of late.
Earlier this month, new father Maxamillian Kendall Neubauer stepped forward to breastfeed his newborn while his wife recovered following a difficult birth.