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Claire retires after 31 years of births

She has been one of the first faces to greet hundreds of babies born in our region.

But now West Suffolk midwife Claire Ambrose has retired after 31 years supporting new life into the world and taking care of mums and families.

Claire joined West Suffolk Hospital in 1984 to train as a staff nurse before deciding to work in maternity. She qualified as a midwife in 1989, going on to work in the community to support women through their pregnancies.

"When you do your general training you do a month in each area. As soon as I got into maternity I thought that was home, it was where I wanted to be," said Claire.

"It was everything I wanted it to be and more - to be in a woman’s own environment and have that bond with them. It’s such a precious time in a couple’s life and you’re so privileged to be a part of it."

After a spell living in North Yorkshire in the 1990s, where she met her husband Mark, she returned to the West Suffolk Hospital - not only to work but also to give birth to her daughter Lucy and son Patrick.

She retired in August, having delivered and cared for hundreds of babies.

"I’m in awe of my colleagues, their dedication is incredible and they’re amazing. They’re very passionate and trying to improve everything. It's a lovely career," said Claire.

West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust chief executive Dr Stephen Dunn said: "Claire has been a true asset to our trust for over 30 years. She’s delivered hundreds of babies in her time, working both in West Suffolk Hospital and the community.

"We would like to wish Claire a very happy retirement. Thank you for your incredible service."

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Retiring midwife Claire Ambrose with one of the first and one of the final babies she helped care for.

Retiring midwife Claire Ambrose with one of the first and one of the final babies she helped care for.