A WOMAN who gave birth in Southend High Street has praised the community for their kindness and care following her unexpected labour.

Lynn Htun and husband, Amir, decided to take a trip to Southend beach for the day on Tuesday but never expected their bundle of joy to arrive in the middle of the high street moments after getting off the train.

At 37 weeks pregnant, new mum Lynn still thought she “had some time left”.

Lynn, from Ilford, said: “It was a nice day so we decided to go down to Southend by train.

“When we got there, everything was fine and we walked down the high street towards the beach.

“I started to feel contractions but thought it was okay and would go away.

“I went to the toilets to check myself and everything seemed normal, but then as we approached the beach the contractions were coming faster and stronger.

“We called the hospital where I was supposed to give birth, at Queens Hospital, in Romford, and they said I need to go to a hospital.

“We did not know the numbers for any local taxis so we started9 to turn back and walk back up towards Southend Central train station.

“Then suddenly I couldn’t walk and I was shouting and screaming, and I felt my waters break.

“I then felt the head and the urge to push. My husband was shocked.

“The baby came after around three pushes. People were so lovely. What beautiful people and a lovely community. People were offering me new towels, water and baby clothes.

“Everyone just wanted to help it was lovely and such a surprise - I am so grateful.”

Luckily, an off-duty midwife was passing and stayed with Lynn and even followed her to the hospital to check everything was okay.

The ambulance arrived 30 minutes later just as the rain began.

Lynn and Amir have two other children together, a boy and a girl, aged one and three.

Lynn remains in hospital with new baby girl Aya, who weighed a tiny 5lbs 3oz.

Alison Churches, 49, an artist who lives in Rayleigh, said: “It was an honour - and slightly terrifying - to be there and the first to hold and wrap the baby. She didn’t really need any help arriving and it was really quite abrupt.

“Hopefully, having someone else there at that instant made it slightly less traumatic for them. I am so happy the baby is okay and hope the poor mum is recovering quickly.

“They are a lovely family and the emotions and memories of that day will stay with me.

“Thanks to the dad for handing me his new daughter while we were waiting for the ambulance so we could take some treasured photos.”