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RD&E team prepare to ‘Pass the Pinard’ and raise cash for mums and babies


Four members of staff from the Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital are preparing to cycle 93miles to help improve the experience for families and babies who visit their Ante/Postnatal Ward.

On the 5th and 6th September Charlotte Kilvington, Hannah Manaton, Trish Heale and Helen Russell, who all work in the Centre for Women’s Health, will take part in the Royal Berkshire Hospital’s ‘Pass the Pinard’ charity challenge

The epic 600 mile relay ride will see a team 50 midwives from the Royal Berkshire cycle from Truro to Newcastle over the course of 13 days. They will be joined en-route by midwifery staff from hospitals across the country, including the RD&E team who will cycle the Exeter to Bristol 93 mile leg of the journey.

At each stage of the journey the riders will pass on a Pinard - a traditional midwifery tool used to listen to the heart rate of a baby during pregnancy.

The RD&E team are set to receive the Pinard from midwives at the Royal Cornwall Hospital at 8am outside the front of Centre for Women's Health on Monday 5th and will pass it on to a team waiting at North Bristol Hospital on Tuesday 6th September.  

By taking part in the challenge the RD&E team are hoping to raise funds to refurbish the family room on the Ante/Postnatal Ward. The room provides accommodation for those families who are likely to have a prolonged stay on the ward. Circumstances may include mums with a complication in pregnancy which needs close observation or those who have a complex medical, social or psychological need, such as a mum with a physical disability, who will benefit from having a family member staying in the room to assist her.

Infant Feeding Coordinator Charlotte Kilvington said: “we were keen to join in with this challenge to support our colleagues from the Royal Berkshire, but we also saw this as an opportunity to help improve things for our own patients and their families.  The family room is an important area, aiming to provide a homely environment and space for families needing physical, social or emotional support during their journey to parenthood and as they learn to care for their baby. At the moment it is quite a clinical room, and not very homely, we are keen to make it feel more comfortable and relaxing, to support these families who are often experiencing really challenging circumstances. We want to make their journey as positive an experience as possible.

“We are looking forward to the cycle but it will be a challenge! We have set up a VirginMoneyGiving page and hope that people will help support us to raise funds for this worthy cause - seeing your donations come in will give us the motivation we need to keep on pedalling!”

If you would like to support the RD&E team please visit or search for Helen Russell.


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