MEET the tot who has made history.
Baby Tommy Sutcliffe was the last baby to leave the Huddersfield special care baby unit as it closed yesterday – and he was transferred to the new neonatal unit at Calderdale Royal Hospital, Halifax, profiled in yesterday’s Examiner.
It marks the end of a long-running saga which saw thousands of Huddersfield people trying to stop the move of most maternity services and the special care baby unit to Calderdale.
Tommy was born 10 weeks early and was a special early delivery for his Linthwaite parents Jeremy Sutcliffe and Becky Harte.
The doors to the consultant-led unit at Huddersfield closed for good yesterday as Tommy made the trip by ambulance from HRI to Calderdale.
Mr Sutcliffe said: “Tommy literally was the last baby to leave the unit. At 11.30 on Friday morning he was transferred to Calderdale and we were the last people there.
“The staff at Huddersfield really were superb, really nice to us and Tommy. There were just three babies left on the unit before it closed. One was allowed home and Tommy and the other baby were both transferred to Calderdale.”
Tommy will be welcomed by big brother Caden Jay and his two sisters Shayleen and Kazia when he finally goes home.
Mr Sutcliffe is the managing director of Brighouse-based Pass the Parcel and is more used to delivering parcels than babies.
But Miss Harte went into early labour as they were on their way to Blackpool.
They quickly turned round and Tommy was born at Huddersfield Royal Infirmary on July 6, weighing just 3lbs 8oz. He now weighs a much healthier 4lbs 10oz.
Mr Sutcliffe added: “We were half way to Blackpool when Becky started getting pains. We turned back and by the time we arrived she had serious labour pains for about five hours and Tommy was born the following morning.
“He’s been at Huddersfield ever since and we’ve been going up there every day to see him. Hopefully he’ll be home by Monday.”
The Huddersfield special care baby unit opened in 1967. On Friday all consultant-led maternity services transferred to Calderdale where all pre-term babies will be delivered.
Mums-to-be with no complications can still choose to give birth at the new midwife-led family birth centre which remains at Huddersfield.