WHILE most families were tucking into Easter eggs and eagerly awaiting their roast dinner, one couple had a very different Easter Sunday when their new baby was born en-route to hospital.
Leah Knowles was left with no choice but to give birth at a Mc- Donald’s car park after her son, Logan, decided to make his entrance into the world more than two weeks early.
The 29-year-old from Hockley was not due until April 12, but started having contractions at 2am on Easter Sunday.
As the contractions got closer and closer together, they jumped in the car and rushed to Southend Hospital.
But little Logan didn’t quite make it to the delivery room and husband Carl, 31, was forced to pull over into the car park outside McDonald’s in the Southend Airport retail park at 7am – just 15 minutes after they left their home.
Carl desperately called 999 as Leah started having Logan in the car.
He said: “I called the ambulance and they gave me advice over the phone.
“I had to recline the seat to make her as comfortable as possible.
“It was a bit scary, the unknown and my wife screaming in pain. I was in the back holding Leah’s hand and helping to calm her down.”
But an ambulance and paramedics soon arrived to help with the final push.
He added: “The baby’s head popped out as the ambulance arrived.
I was told to put my hand on the baby’s head.
“It was all very surreal – I have never been so pleased to see blue lights in my life.”
Carl said it wasn’t the birth the couple had planned but said they now have a story to tell their little one as he grows up.
He added: “It wasn’t ideal but these things happen and it’s a story to tell people.
“I wasn’t upset, if he wants to come, he wants to come.
“People have babies in all sorts of places.”
Leah said was really surprised at how quick the whole thing happened.
She said: “It’s a little bit different, not quite what we’d anticipated.
“It was a bit of a shock.
“I was screaming at him to pull over and it was the only place we could find.
“We needed somewhere public that the ambulance would know.
“There weren’t many people about.
“From the point of us thinking we needed to go to the hospital to him arriving was only about 15 minutes.”
Leah had to go through the labour without any pain relief but said she thought the situation was just as bad for her husband.
The 31-year-old said: “For me it was difficult.
“I couldn’t get onto the back seat and the front seat wouldn’t go down flat.
“It really wasn’t the ideal positioning.
“I think it was more distressing for my husband than me.
“I’m happy that he’s here now and really grateful for what the ambulance crew did.”
The couple already have a two and a half year old son, Ridgley, and are now all back at home with the newest addition to the family.