A NEW £1.2 million midwifery-led unit for expectant mums across the north west will open at Warrington Hospital next week.

The state-of-the-art facility, which contains four en-suite birth rooms, will be ready to welcome families on Tuesday, providing a home-away-from-home birth experience.

'The Nest' is a relaxed and less clinical environment, designed to promote active, upright labours.

Each room has its own birthing pool and two of these have access to the garden area.

The equipment available includes birthing couches, birthing stools, mats and positioning pillows.

There is even specialist lighting, Bluetooth speakers and projectors so women in labour can personalise the space.

Evidence highlights that Midwifery-Led Units (MLU) have proven to be beneficial to women and their families.

Labour is often shorter and there is less intervention required.

Most families will choose the option of an early discharge home from the MLU and to be supported by the midwives in the comfort of their own home.

The Nest has a large kitchen area for patients and staff use, as well as refreshment facilities in each room.

Future plans include developing a more private outside garden area for ladies to utilise during their labour.

Chief nurse for Warrington and Halton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Kimberley Salmon-Jamieson, said: "We are delighted and proud of this amazing new facility for families across the north west, and we believe it is one of the bes,t not only in the area, but in the UK.

"The suite is both state-of-the-art and also creates a relaxing and supportive place in which to have your baby.

"We can’t wait to welcome our first families."

For more information on The Nest visit whh.nhs.uk/services/maternity.