Parent Education

At Airedale NHS Foundation Trust we believe that every woman and family booked to receive maternity care through our Trust should expect a high standard of antenatal education as it is an important and valued element of our maternity services. Physical, emotional and intellectual preparation can have a huge impact on birth outcomes and effective parent education can significantly increase the likelihood of a normal birth and a healthy baby – both are factors which will enhance the transition to parenthood.

Our classes are available for all women booked to receive their maternity care at Airedale. We offer a variety of classes and you can attend at any time during your pregnancy, but we suggest that between 28 to 36 weeks of pregnancy is ideal. Spaces are limited per class to ensure quality and therefore it is advisable to book early, Please book following your 20 week Ultrasound scan. (how to book).

We would encourage you to bring your main birth partner with you to the classes. You are welcome to bring your own refreshments and a pillow for your comfort.

Parent Education sessions aim to be informative, fun, interactive, and an excellent way for you to meet other parents-to-be.

Please be aware that  due to road works in Keighley your journey to the hospital may take slightly longer than usual.

As a minimum, we recommend you attend:
Keep birth normal (approximately 3 hours)
The aim of the session is to enable participants to learn about the labour process and to find out about a variety of coping techniques to enable you to have a calm, confident and positive approach to labour and the birth of your baby. At the end of the sessions there will be opportunity to view the labour ward (called the ‘Stork Walk’). As this is a busy maternity unit, access to labour rooms may not always be possible.
Takes place most Tuesday evenings 5pm-8pm.
Caring for your baby: building a positive relationship (approximately 2.5-3 hours)
This session gives you information about how you can meet your baby’s needs and the importance of a close and loving relationship. It includes information about how a baby’s brain develops, feeding your baby and how you can help to get breast feeding off to a good start, with practical information including meeting the needs of a newborn and safe sleeping. The session is interactive, informative and fun!
Takes place most Thursday evenings & occasionally other dates 5pm-8pm.

If weekday evenings are not convenient, you could alternatively attend a weekend workshop taking place 9.30am-4pm on a Saturday (includes a break for lunch – food not provided). The weekend workshop covers everything from the keep birth normal and caring for your baby sessions.

There is also a four week birth and parenting course which covers everything already mentioned as well as water birth, when nature needs a hand and life as a family to enable you to build friendships and support networks. It is suggested that you bring a pillow for this course for your comfort.

Takes place Thursday evenings 17:00-19:30pm (occasionally other evenings).

February 2020: Thursday evenings 6th, 13th 20th,27th 1700-1930 FULL

March 2020: Thursday evenings 5th, 12th,  19th, 26th 1700-1930 FULL

May 2020: WEDNESDAY evenings 6th, 13th, 20th, 27th 17:00 – 19:30

*Please do not book the Saturday workshop or the evening sessions if you are attending this four week course*

We also provide the following as standalone sessions:

Stork Walk (approximately 30 minutes)

The Stork walk can be booked at any time in your pregnancy.
The aim of the stork walk is to provide women and their birthing partners an opportunity to become familiar with the labour ward environment. As this is a busy maternity unit, access to labour rooms may not always be possible.
Takes place most Wednesday afternoons.

New for 2020 Sunday Stork Walk once a month Tour of the Birthing unit.

Starting Sunday 26th January 2pm ( Please phone to book)

Water birth (approximately 2 hours)
This session will introduce water birth and the many benefits for you and your baby. This session will include a visit to the pool rooms on the midwife led unit. You will watch a water birth DVD and have time for discussion.
Takes place Friday mornings.

When nature needs a hand (approximately 1.5-2 hours)
This session will provide you with information about induction of labour and what happens when your birth needs assistance.
Takes place once a month, Friday mornings.

One to one sessions
we offer one to one sessions should you require specific support during your pregnancy.
These sessions can be booked by emailing us directly at

Hypnobirthing course (approximately 2.5 hour session over 2 week course)

PLEASE NOTE: it is important to attend a Keeping Birth Normal Class PRIOR to attending a Hypnobirthing course in order to gain most benefit from the course.
Hypnobirthing is a complete antenatal training programme which makes a difference to birth for mums-to-be, your birthing partner, and for your baby. The course will teach you a combination of easy to learn methods including breathing techniques, deep relaxation and visualisation combined with positive thought and language to assist you to achieve a positive birth experience. Childbirth can be an empowering and positive event in your life – and one you want to cherish.  Please note Hypnobirthing is a course and you will be required to attend both sessions to obtain the full benefit of Hypnobirthing.
Takes place – varies each month.

2020 sessions

January Sessions: Mondays 13th & 20th 1700-1930 FULL OR  Friday 17th& 24th  1300-1530 FULL

February sessions: Wednesdays 5th &12th 1700-1930  FULL OR Friday 7th & 14th 1300-1530 FULL

March sessions: Wednesdays 18th & 25th 1700-1930 FULL  OR Friday 13th & 20th 1300-1530 FULL

April sessions: Wednesdays 22nd & 29th 1700-1930  FULL or Mondays 20th and 27th April 13:00 – 15:30

How to book

Bookings can be made via the antenatal clinic 01535 294681 or 292411.Please book once you have had your 20 week Ultrasound scan.  Any specific enquiries can be emailed to  If you are unable to attend a class please let us know as soon as possible so your place can be offered to another person and we can organise an alternative date for you to attend.

Parent Education sessions will be held in the Parent Education room on Ward 21 (Location B18).

Classes will start promptly – please ensure you allow time to park and walk to the venue. Please note there is a small charge for car parking in the hospital grounds.

We ask that you arrive about 5 minutes before the start time of the class and wait outside the ward where a member of staff will meet and greet you. (Please note that there is no need to press the ward intercom to announce your arrival as a member of staff will be there at the start of the class to meet you.)

Feedback from people who have attended our classes:

“Feel 100% more informed and inspired”

“Friendly approach”

“It was fun and useful”

“Janet has a calm manner, really informative”

“Gives a positive approach to birth”

“I am a man and wasn’t sure about coming, but I am glad I did. I really enjoyed it and learned a lot”

“Brill, would definitely recommend”

“It is fantastic this is free”

“Loved the whole course, Sarah has been great”

“The session was invaluable and empowering”

“Excellent clear info for labour and afterwards”