MUMS in Trowbridge could face extra stress after it was revealed midwives at Trowbridge will now only be working on an ‘as needed’ basis at night.

Chippenham Birthing Centre posted on Facebook saying that from Monday (January 7) the Trowbridge

Centre is staffed on an ‘as needed’ basis only from 8pm-8am.

Expectant mothers who are currently under the care of the Trowbridge centre have been advised to call Chippenham midwives between these hours if they go into labour and have not already warned a midwife at Trowbridge during the day that they are in labour and their baby could arrive overnight.

The same change applies to Frome Birthing Centre. The move has led to some campaigners fearing the maternity service in Trowbridge is already being wound down, although a consultation by the trust which runs them into the unit’s future has more than a month to run.

The trust denied this week it has changed any services at birthing centres, saying: “Women are still able to give birth at the centre of their choice.”

But that is not a view shared by campaigner Andy Milroy, of Bellefield Crescent in Trowbridge, who is campaigning for the town’s health services and has launched a petition to keep the Trowbridge Birthing Centre open. Under the proposals in the current consultation births there are due to end and it will become solely an ante- and post-natal care centre.

Mr Milroy said: “Only having night staff on an ‘as needed’ basis just shows how the are already winding it down, they have been for years.

“Trowbridge, Melksham and Westbury are the fastest growing areas and to not have a birthing centre makes no sense whatsoever.

“All three of my children were born in Trowbridge and I only just got there in time for the births.

“If all mothers are in Bath that is a long way for the families to go, and the mothers need support.

“The number of babies born in taxis, ambulances or private cars on the way to Bath from this area will very much increase.”

Sarah Merritt, head of nursing and midwifery, Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust said: “We are not changing the services we offer at any of our birthing centres.

“Women are still able to give birth at the centre of their choice, and Details of how to get in touch when they go into labour will have been discussed with them during ante-natal appointments. This is not related to our ongoing maternity consultation process.”

Asked what mums planning to deliver in Trowbridge should do if they need to see a midwife urgently during the night, perhaps because they fear they are in premature labour, or what mums visiting the area who are not registered locally should do in that situation, a spokesman from Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust said: “There is no change to what women would need to do to get the appropriate support they need.”

The Wiltshire Times also asked if re-staffing was presumptive of the centre closing, considering the consultation inst over until next month.

A spokesman replied: “We are not changing the service we offer at any of our birthing centres. Women are still able to give birth at the centre of their choice.”

Are you giving birth soon or have you given birth in the past at Trowbridge birthing centre? Send us your views on the consultation to