Library revamp suits young mums

YOUNG mums in Felixstowe are finding more than books in their town library after it was given an extensive revamp.Since its £1 million refurbishment, the library has become a hub for the community and a place for young mums to relax and chat with other parents as well as breastfeed in safety and comfort.

YOUNG mums in Felixstowe are finding more than books in their town library after it was given an extensive revamp.

Since its £1 million refurbishment, the library has become a hub for the community and a place for young mums to relax and chat with other parents as well as breastfeed in safety and comfort.

The launch of the Baby Café drop-in is one new service which has brought many new people to use its facilities.

Mums had complained about the lack of places to breastfeed, with many reduced to sitting in cars, toilets or shops' storerooms.


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Now they can breastfeed in the library in Crescent Road in an open, friendly, relaxed environment, and at the same time meet up with health visitors, get their babies weighed, and pick up advice on all kinds of matters.

They can also grab a book, CD or DVD while they are in there.

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Mum Kaye Beaumont said she uses the Baby Café regularly to have her 20-week son Max weighed.

“It's just lovely to be able to meet up with other mums and have a chat and a coffee and for the children to meet other youngsters,” she said.

“I do breastfeed here and it's just brilliant to be able to do so in such a relaxed atmosphere.”

Mum Phillipa Clements said she brought her son Leo to enjoy the singing and stories, and it was great parents had a place to meet together.

Suffolk Primary Care Trust's Felixstowe health visiting cluster team and Suffolk Libraries, part of Suffolk County Council, are working together to provide the Baby Café.

The service is attended by up to 20 women at a time and is considered “extremely successful”.

County councillor Rosemary Clarke, who officially opened the centre, said: “It's such a wonderful idea. Young mums can so easily become isolated and this is a place where they can meet others and make friends.”

Children, schools and young people portfolio holder Patricia O'Brien said: “I would have loved to have had a service like this when my children were young - I was a big bookworm and it would have been great to have been able to have brought them to a library.

“To be able to breastfeed here, too, is brilliant. It is a natural thing to do and the mums are unobtrusive.”

The free drop-in is held every Friday, except bank holidays, from 10.30am to 12.30pm.

What do you think of the Baby Café? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk

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