About this service

Antenatal classes

Antenatal classes accept a maximum of eight couples (sometimes six). This is to ensure you enjoy the experience and have plenty of opportunity to ask questions. Demand is high, so please ensure you book by 20 weeks of pregnancy. Please book your classes early. Your midwife can do this for you at your antenatal appointment.



Hypnobirthing is a combination of education, self-hypnosis, deep relaxation and birth partner education. This helps you to achieve a more comfortable birth experience. Hypnobirthing enables you and your birthing partner to be calm, confident and in control during childbirth.

Hypnobirthing is for all births. We recognise that birth may take a different path than the one you had planned. Hypnobirthing can be used very successfully in all experiences, including Caesareans, inductions of labour, or situations that arise at the time. The techniques you and your partner learn can aid you in creating a positive birth on the day.

The hypnobirth course includes:

  • what happens in labour
  • upright birth positions
  • massage techniques
  • deep relaxation skills
  • how to personalise your birth space
  • what helps birth progress and what hinders it
  • how to be a great birth partner

This is a 10-hour course over 4 weeks.

Before you book a hypnobirth course, please understand that hypnobirth requires practice. There will be techniques for you and your partner to practice at home between classes. Demand for classes is high and there is usually a waiting list so please enquire early. You can buy a download of scripts for the course from the CD Baby website.

To book on this course at Colchester Hospital, please speak to your midwife or call 01206 742 779.

To book on this course at Clacton Hospital, please speak to your midwife.

To book on this course at Harwich Hospital, please speak to your midwife.

Ipswich Hospital is not able to offer this course at present.

Colchester Hospital hypnobirthing parents share their experiences in this video.


Colchester Hospital classes

Twins and multiple birth evening

This evening allows parents expecting more than one baby to meet other parents and share experiences. The session includes a tour of the neonatal Unit. This is not an antenatal class, but a chance to ask questions of a midwife and twin mum about twin birth and life with twins.

Ask the midwife

This 2 hour session gives you the opportunity to ask questions about any aspect of pregnancy and birth.  It also includes a tour of the birth rooms.  Details of dates and times are posted on our “Colchester Hospital maternity page” on Facebook.

You can book any of the classes at Colchester Hospital by calling us on 01206 742 779 Monday to Friday 9am to12pm, or ask your midwife.


Ipswich Hospital classes

Feeding your baby

This class can help you make a decision about how to feed your baby when they arrive. This is an opportunity to discuss your options and have your questions answered in a relaxed atmosphere. Partners are welcome to attend.

You can book this class by contacting your midwife.

Preparing for birth workshop

This workshop is provided by our partner organisation, Suffolk Babies.  The workshop is free of charge to you and your birth partner if you are registered with a midwife in this area.  Click on the link below to find out about the workshop and to book your place.

Essential Preparation for Birth Workshop


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