A woman who gave birth on the forecourt of a service station in Ashbourne just days ago returned to the store yesterday with her new born baby to thank the kind staff who helped her deliver the baby.
Annabelle Martha Corrigan was born at 5.30pm on 9th April in the front passenger seat of the family car at King’s Gala Ashbourne weighing a healthy eight pounds and eight ounces.
Ratoath mum Francesca Corrigan (33), husband Robert and two-year-old big brother Logan got a VIP reception when they arrived at the busy store to introduce baby Annabelle and thank the staff in who were at hand when the shocked mother realised her baby wasn’t waiting to be born at a hospital.
“I was at home around 4pm when the contractions started so I rang my husband who left work to come home.
The King's Gala Ashbourne staff with the Corrigans.
“My waters broke about 45 minutes later so I knew she was coming quick and fast so my friend, Helena Kane, arrived to drive me to the hospital.
“We were on the way there with my two-year-old son Logan and I had to tell her to pull over because I could feel the head coming out.
“Between me saying that and pulling into the garage her head had come out. We were on the phone to the paramedics who were advising us what to do. Helena just started beeping the horn to get help.
“A lovely lady called Irene was getting fuel and rushed over, Helena was holding the baby’s head and Irene helped deliver her body and she just came out!
Good wishes...Staff present Francesca and the family with hampers. PHOTOS: Seamus Farrelly
“Two lovely staff members, Siobhan and Mary as well as a chap called Stephen who works beside the shop came to look after Logan, they brought me water and waited until the ambulance came.”
Francesca, a primary school teacher originally from Preston in the UK along with baby Annabelle were checked over by paramedics before they were brought to Holles Street Hospital.
“I was just in shock and wanted to make sure Annabelle was ok, I wasn’t panicked, there was no time to think. She was coming whether I liked it or not! She wasn’t waiting around, she was born within an hour of getting my first contraction."
“Helena reassured me that she was breathing. She delivered herself. It’s surreal looking back on it now but I’m just so grateful she was safe.
“I’m delighted to be here today to thank the staff, it’s the place of her birth after all.”
Francesca Corrigan with King's Gala Ashbourne owner Jerry Brady and Baby Annabelle
King’s Gala manager Jerry Brady was thrilled to welcome the family back and presented them with hampers on behalf of the store.
“It’s an honour to have Francesca, Robert and the star of the show, baby Annabelle, here today. It wasn’t the ideal scenario for Francesca but we are so glad that we helped them in the small way we did and that mum and baby are both safe and well.”
“This will definitely be a story for her 21st, I’ve already started a scrapbook.” laughed the relieved mum.