New Channel 4 series focuses on Southampton's Princess Anne Hospital

A groundbreaking Channel 4 TV series set to give viewers a unique behind-the-scenes insight into life in a maternity hospital begins on Tuesday (9 February).

Filmed at the Princess Anne Hospital in Southampton over the period of a month, One Born Every Minute is the first maternity documentary to be made using 40 fixed cameras.

The series consists of eight one-hour episodes and will give viewers a chance to go into the lives of expectant mothers and their families from the very start of the birthing process.

The programmes will offer a glimpse of life on the wards from all angles, with footage taken from the reception desk to the neonatal ward, and from the operating theatre to the birthing pool.

In addition, One Born Every Minute is integrated with a major online initiative, offering an easy to use interactive insight for prospective parents into the realities of giving birth.

Maria Dore, head of midwifery at the Princess Anne Hospital, Southampton University Hospitals NHS Trust, said: "Every birth is a unique experience and we are privileged to share that experience with women and their partners.

"The idea of capturing this on film to reveal the pleasures and the challenges that staff face on a daily basis was an opportunity not to be missed."

In episode one, viewers will follow mum Tracy, who is in labour with her fourth child. Her husband Steve and her eldest son are in jovial spirits and the mood is upbeat until the heart rate of her baby slows and the midwife needs to deliver her child quickly. 

Also in the spotlight is 22-year-old Lisa, who has gone into labour and learns her baby must be delivered by emergency caesarean and will be taken straight to an incubator where the first few minutes of its life are going to be critical. 

Simon Dickson, deputy head of documentaries at Channel 4, said: "Following the success of The Family, we wanted to make another multi-camera observational documentary and it seemed that a maternity ward - with its extremes of joy and emotion - would be a fascinating place to do it. Princess Anne is a wonderful maternity hospital and we have thoroughly enjoyed working with the team there. We are delighted with the series."

One Born Every Minute starts Tuesday at 9pm on C4. For more information on the series, visit: www.channel4.com/born|.

Posted on Wednesday 3 February 2010