Local delivery for St Albans couple

DRINKS all round was the order of the day on Tuesday when a proud father-of-four from St Albans delivered his baby girl in a pub car park.

Lola Rose was born just after 8.30am in The Cock car park in Colney Heath after mother Fay Small, 36, went into labour en route to Watford General Hospital. Frantic father Paul Small, 38, who owns Alban Cleaning Services on Hatfield Road, said that he knew he would not get to the hospital on time.

“Because we’ve already been through it three times, I could tell with Fay that she was about to pop. But I was in the middle of early morning traffic, so what could I do? I pulled over into a nearby pub car park so that the kids walking to school nearby wouldn’t be traumatised, then jumped out of the car and over to Fay’s side.”

Paul, of The Ridgeway, said that the next few moments were a blur: “I remember being on the phone to a paramedic and he talked me through the delivery. Fay was phenomenal – so calm and focused on controlling the contractions. I could see Lola’s head and it was a matter of minutes before she came flying out and into my hands.”

Landlord Jim Whiting said that he was in the back yard when he heard the sirens: “I was pottering about outside when a four by four rolled into the car park, followed by sirens about 10 minutes afterwards. I assumed it was a police car at first but when I clicked what had happened, I rushed inside the pub to tell my wife.”


Jim’s wife Pam, who has lived at the pub for 48 years, said that she didn’t believe her husband at first: “I thought Jim was pulling my leg! We may have had a few babies conceived out there, but this is certainly the first birth.”

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County and district councillor Cllr Chris Brazier happened to be walking past the pub when Lola Rose was born and he shook hands with a very proud Paul. “He was completely shell-shocked and certainly wasn’t expecting to deliver his own baby. This is a Lib Dem ward but we have had a Labour birth,” said Cllr Brazier.

Lola Rose, who weighed just over 7lb, and her mother were transferred to the QEII hospital in Welwyn Garden City where they were checked out before being discharged later that afternoon. Paul, an ex-Verulam Secondary School pupil who has been married for 10 years, said that Lola was getting on marvellously with her siblings Olivia, 12, Samuel, nine, and George, three.

Paul, a member of the St Albans District Chamber of Commerce, said: “Fay is exhausted but we are both over the moon. It was an incredible feeling to deliver my baby but after Tuesday’s dramatic events, I think we can safely say that Lola Rose will be our last child!”

Paul and Fay are due to visit the Whitings on Saturday to wet the baby’s head, and Pam said that they had already decorated the pub with pink balloons in honour of baby Lola Rose.

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