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Birth Centre Reopens at Andover War Memorial Hospital

The Birth Centre at Andover War Memorial Hospital has reopened following extensive refurbishment and a major upgrade to its screening facilities.

A small ceremony marked the occasion with a ribbon cut by two long-standing staff members who also happened to have been born at the hospital – Helen George and Linda Cleverley.

Although the hospital continued to provide maternity services, including a home birth service, the birthing centre was temporarily closed in 2022 as part of a wider refurbishment programme. The original birthing rooms, which had been in use for a number of decades, have now been converted into a high-tech ultrasound unit, enabling women to undergo antenatal screening locally.

The newly opened Birth Centre features a birthing room designed to provide a calm and spacious environment with as many comforts as possible including a birthing pool, soft lighting, and some additional birthing aids which enable women to use gravity during labour and birth.

The Birth Centre also has a dedicated room where Hampshire Hospitals’ maternity staff can provide clinics as well as antenatal education and support with infant feeding.

Wendy Randall, Hampshire Hospitals Director of Midwifery, says: “The heritage of Andover is one of the reasons why it is so special; we have simply provided more modern facilities to improve the birthing environment for the women who choose to birth there”.

“It is wonderful to celebrate a new chapter for the Andover War Memorial Hospital and once again provide women with the choice of a freestanding, midwifery-led unit in their local area.”

“Having a baby is a wonderful, life-changing event; we are delighted to offer a welcoming space where we can provide important support, guidance, and information in pregnancy and after the birth of the baby.”

The Birth Centre was developed with valuable input from the Maternity Voices Partnership – a network that listens to the experiences of women and families to improve maternity and neonatal care.


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