Antenatal and Birth Preparation Classes

If you have booked to have your baby at Royal Surrey you are entitled to attend antenatal classes at the hospital.

At The Royal Surrey County Hospital, we try to ensure that we have an antenatal class to suit everyone. All the classes are led by trained and experienced midwives and physiotherapists and taught using the most recent research and evidence. We pride ourselves on providing honest, accurate and evidence based information so that women and their birth partners can leave the classes excited, informed and most importantly with realistic expectations. Our classes cover ladies living in Guildford, Godalming, Farnham and Ash as well as all the surrounding towns and villages.

You may attend classes at any of our venues, but a lot of mums would like to attend classes closer to them so they can meet other local mums and dads. Our classes are led by one of our midwives so you will receive up to date, evidence based and realistic information and all of the money from the private classes goes to the maternity unit!

Click here to see our full class  January to December 2018 Timetable

Click here to see the latest feedback on our classes

Click here to read our Frequently Asked Questions

Your Pregnancy Matters – An Introduction to Maternity Services (Ideally 12-18 weeks)

We believe that every pregnancy matters and with this in mind, we would like to invite you to our ‘Your Pregnancy Matters’ event at The Royal Surrey County Hospital. During this event you will hear what services we provide during the antenatal period like antenatal classes, mental health support and community care. We will discuss what options are available for your birth and you will hear about Homebirth, birth in our Midwife Led Unit and using our Delivery suite. Midwives will also be on hand to answer any questions you may have and a tour of the maternity unit is included (this is the only tour of the Maternity Unit available during your pregnancy). You will get to meet other local parents whose babies are due around the same time as yours as well!

The event is free but you must have a confirmed booking.

We suggest you attend between 12 and 18 weeks, however, you are welcome to attend at any gestation.  Please book ASAP as this event is very popular.

To book:

Please request two tickets from the drop down, if you are bringing someone with you. This event is unfortunately not suitable for children.

Preparing for Pregnancy (Preconception – 11 weeks)

This class is for couples who are thinking about having a baby, already trying to conceive or are very newly pregnant.  The class will highlight how women and their partners can take steps to improve their health before and during pregnancy and includes information about:

  • Healthy lifestyles,
  • Nutrition,
  • Immunisations and infections,
  • Environmental factors,
  • Medical conditions,
  • Medications
  • Identifying the best time in your monthly cycle to conceive.

A tour of the maternity unit is included in the class to prepare you for what you might expect when you are expecting! Classes are held at RSCH.

The sessions are run at The Royal Surrey County Hospital. For available dates or to book, please email with your name, address, contact number and due date or call: 01483 571122 Ext 2031.

Antenatal Workshop (approx. 32 weeks onwards)

A free 6 hour antenatal workshop run by the community midwives that covers all the important aspects of labour, birth and the first few days with a new born. Topics covered include; stages of labour, pain relief, active birth, variations from the normal, infant feeding and baby care. The workshops are taught in Guildford, Godalming, Farnham and Haslemere.

To book: and select the Antenatal Workshop in your area. Please book 2 tickets if you are bring your birth partner with you. If there are no spaces on your selected course, please choose another date or alternatively a different area.

Birth and Beyond Courses (approx. 24 weeks onwards) 

**Our recommended gold standard antenatal classes. A course to suit every expectant parents needs**

Below you will find a wide range of our ‘paid’ for antenatal classes at the hospital.  These are designed to offer women more choice when it comes to their antenatal education.  The small class sizes encourage parents to make friends with other local parents to be in their area and as the classes are midwife led they will be receiving excellent midwife led, evidence based and accurate information as well!  The money from the antenatal classes goes to improving the maternity environment and providing additional courses and classes for women and staff. For any question regarding these classes, please email

For available dates or to book, please email with your name, address, contact number and due date or call: 01483 571122 Ext 2031.

Birth and Beyond Complete (approx. 28 weeks onwards) – £275

The ‘complete’ package that includes everything a first time parent needs!

Weeks 1 and 2:  Labour and birth including all pain relief options, the 5R’s and birth partner role.

Week 3:  C section, Induction and instrumental birth.

Week 4:  HypnoBirthing (includes MP3 and book) Techniques to help you stay calm however you birth you baby.

Week 5:  6 hour Baby Care Workshop including a 1.5 First Aid Course, 1.5 hour Breastfeeding class and a Colostrum Collection talk and a 3 hour Practical Baby Care class. Tour of the maternity unit after the workshop.

Weeks 6-10 (after the babies are born)- Baby Massage.  4 week baby massage course where you learn to help babies with minor issues such as colic and wind and get to meet up with everyone from the course!  Baby massage has also been shown to help mothers and babies relax and aids bonding.

This course provides a fantastic opportunity to meet other local parents to be as you will attend all the same sessions booked together. You will get evidence based, accurate and un-biased information in small groups which allows for excellent interaction and plenty of time to answer questions!

There are classes for parents who live in Guildford and surrounds and a class for parents who live in Godalming, Haslemere and surrounds so you will always have the opportunity of meeting other local parents! 

Birth and Beyond Essentials (approx. 28 weeks onwards) – £150

A 3 week course that covers basic aspects of labour, birth and baby care.  This allows the information to be taken in three small chunks and also allows you to meet other local parents to be!

Week 1: Labour, birth, pain relief, The 5 R’s.

Week 2:  Birth partner role, C section, induction and Instrumental birth.

Week 3: Baby Care Workshop.

Breastfeeding, Colostrum Collection and Baby Massage are not included in this course. Booking is essential. Classes are held at RSCH.

Birth and Beyond Refresher (approx. 28 weeks onwards) – £75

A 4 hour ‘refresher’ course for parents who have had a baby before! The class will cover:

  • What to expect second/third time around (when to come in etc).
  • What your options are for birth (homebirth, midwife led unit, delivery suite, pool room).
  • Ways of helping yourself (the 5R’s, pain relief, pool birth).
  • Recap on baby care (bathing, safe sleeping, transition to parenthood etc).
  • Tour of the maternity unit.

Booking is essential. Classes are held at RSCH.

Birth and Beyond: Hypnobirthing Complete (approx. 24 weeks onwards) – £125

Hypnobirthing education taught by experienced practising midwives and qualified hypnobirthing practitioners. Hypnobirthing teaches breathing, relaxation, massage and visualisation techniques to women and their birth partners to help them achieve a calm, gentle birth. Hypnobirthing is not only used by mums wanting a natural labour and birth, but by any mum wanting to learn ways to stay calm, controlled and relaxed during labour and birth.  The class is 6 hours long and includes a book and MP3 download (this class is included in Birth and Beyond Complete).

Hypnobirthing techniques are taught in this class. If you have you a mental health diagnosis, this class may not be suitable. Please discuss with your Mental Health Team or Jasmine Team prior to booking.

Birth and Beyond:  HypnoBirthing for Casesarean Section (approx. 24 weeks onwards) – £60

HypnoBirthing education for mum’s who are having a caesarean section to birth their babies.  Techniques to keep you calm before, during and after the birth of your baby.  Specific techniques/ affirmations are taught that can be used to help you stay focused and relaxed in theatre as they are tailored to the theatre environment and a surgical birth.

Hypnobirthing techniques are taught in this class. If you have you a mental health diagnosis, this class may not be suitable. Please discuss with your Mental Health Team or Jasmine Team prior to booking.

Birth and Beyond: Water Birth Workshop (approx. 28 weeks onwards) – £25

This 2 hour class discusses; The benefits of water for mum and baby, Safety, Risks and Special Considerations, Caring for you and your baby in the water, What to wear, Pharmacological pain relief and the use of water,  the Birth Partners role and coping methods which complement the use of the pool. The class includes tours of the maternity units pools (where vacant) including the Midwifery Led pool rooms and the Consultant Led pool. Demonstration (dry) of portable, inflatable, pool used commonly at home.

 Birth and Beyond: First Aid for New Parents – £35

This is an informal class giving parents the opportunity to learn basic resuscitation and choking management for both infants (0-1yr) and children (1yr – puberty) in accordance with the Resuscitation Council UK guidelines. The session will also cover some basic first aid including bleeding, burns, head injuries and seizures.

We cannot accommodate children or babies on the class and you will not be able to attend if you bring them with you. No refunds will be given.

(Please note, this class is included in Birth and Beyond Complete)

Birth and Beyond: Baby Care Workshop (approx. 32 weeks) – £60

A lot of a pregnant couple’s time and attention is focused on the birth of the baby, but what do you do afterwards? This 3 hour class will cover everything you need to know about the early days of parenting such as nappy changing, sleeping, bathing as well as the transition into parenthood and postnatal recovery for mum. (Please note Breastfeeding is taught separately by attending the Antenatal Breastfeeding Class).

Perfect for parents who want a recap as they have had a baby before or for parents who want to add to their antenatal education (this class is included in Birth and Beyond Complete).

Birth and Beyond: Baby Massage (from 6 weeks) – £40

At the Royal Surrey County Hospital, we recognise the benefits of baby massage for both mums and babies. We now offer baby massage classes which can be attended any time from birth (but most babies enjoy it most from 6 weeks) and the classes are led by Royal Surrey Midwives and Nurses! (this class is included in Birth and Beyond Complete).

Birth and Beyond: Just Baby Package – £100

Baby Care Workshop, First Aid for New Parents and a 4 week Baby Massage Class for after your baby is born (Can be attended separately, cheaper if you book the package)!

Twins and Multiples Class  

This class is designed and led by a midwife who is mother to twins herself.  The content includes; options for labour and birth, how you will be monitored, pain relief options, assisted birth as well as caesarean section, what to expect on the ward and at home, infant feeding and general baby care.  Also discussed is what happens if your babies need special care in our Special care baby unit (SCBU) or in our transitional care bay.  Included in the class is a tour of the maternity unit (not SCBU). This class is FREE, booking is essential.

Breastfeeding (Antenatal) Class (approx. 32 weeks onwards)

The breastfeeding class is taught by our Infant Feeding specialist midwife.  During the class she will discuss relationship building (bump bonding) and the part breastfeeding plays in this;  the importance of  establishing the foundations of health and how colostrum milk and breastfeeding can support this and the difficulties of breastfeeding in today’s society and ways of overcoming this. Correct positioning and attachment as well as practical support is also covered.  Partners very welcome.

This course is FREE and lasts approx. 90 minutes, no need to book, just turn up but please note you must be there for the duration of the class!

This class is held in the Parentcraft room at the back of the Antenatal Clinic (outpatients 1) on level B. Classes are held at RSCH.  (Class is included in ‘Birth and Beyond Complete’).

You attend this class while you are pregnant.

The class runs:

Every 2nd Wednesday of the month between 1330 – 1500 in the Parentcraft Room.


Every 4th Wednesday of the month between 1900 – 2030 in the Parentcraft Room.

Colostrum Collection Clinic

This weekly drop in clinic, held in the Antenatal Clinic Parentcraft room, is for any parents that would like to learn more about how to express and store colostrum in preparation for their baby/babies arrival. Collecting colostrum can be really useful. Expressing during pregnancy could lead to an increased supply once your baby is born, give you some reserves to keep in the freezer, provide a store of gut priming colostrum for babies first feed if mum is choosing to formula feed, and research shows that those who have tried hand expressing in pregnancy are more likely to have a positive breastfeeding experience.  You are taught how to hand express on a knitted breast!

Open to all including those who are planning on formula feeding.

This course is FREE, no need to book, just turn up!

Every Thursday, 2pm – 4pm in the Parentcraft room at the back of the Antenatal Clinic (outpatients 1) on level B (Class is included in ‘Birth and Beyond Complete’).

Fear Release Class (approx. from 24 weeks onwards)

This 3 hour class is for women who are very fearful of giving birth.  Its aim is to discuss what the options are surrounding birth, dispel myths about labour and birth and teach relaxation, breathing and massage techniques to help women feel more relaxed and comfortable in the run up to, and during the birthing process.  This class is for mums only.  This class is FREE, however you will require a referral from your midwife or doctor.

Hypnobirthing techniques are taught in this class. If you have you a mental health diagnosis, this class may not be suitable. Please discuss with your Mental Health Team or Jasmine Team prior to booking.

Induction Workshop (37 weeks +)

If you are due to be induced, we offer an induction workshop to help you to understand what to expect.  Discussed in the workshop:

  • The process of induction- Ways we induce your birth.
  • What to expect of being on the ward- What to bring/ how long it may take.
  • Ways of helping yourself – Realistic expectations/ pain relief options.
  • Colostrum Collection- Benefits for baby/ Benefits for induction.

At the end of the session you will have the opportunity to hire a TENS machine from the physiotherapy department before going home (optional).

This class is Free. You do not need to book, just turn up, however you do need to attend for the duration of the class. Birth partners welcome!

Every Monday, 1030am – 1230pm in the Parentcraft room at the back of the Antenatal Clinic (outpatients 1) on level B

Home Birth Forum

Interested in learning more about homebirth?  The home birth forum is an informal meeting run by the Surrey Hills Homebirth Team and is attended by both mums to be who are planning on having a homebirth and mums who have already had a homebirth.  Come and listen to other mum’s experience of homebirth or pop along for a chat with one of the homebirth midwives.  The coffee mornings are FREE and run on a monthly basis. For more information on homebirth then please contact Tanya Ashton on 07467339395 or email  For dates and times of the coffee mornings then please go to 

Physical Preparation for Childbirth

Run by The Women’s Health Specialist Physiotherapy Team

Class 1: Great Expectations: Staying fit, preventing pain in pregnancy.  (ideal to attend from 12-20 weeks but can come at any time)

Learn ways to minimise discomfort during your pregnancy. We cover posture, back care, core stability, pelvic floor exercises and exercising during your pregnancy. Suitable from 12 weeks onwards.

Class 2: Labour Stage 1: Optimising your experience

Understand how labour positions, breathing techniques, relaxation, massage and TENS can ease your labour.

Class 3: Labour Stage 2: Delivery and beyond

Learn positions for the second stage of labour; breathing techniques, instrumental deliveries and caesarean section. Understand postnatal recovery including returning to usual activities and exercise.  We also advise on perineal massage.

Classes 2 and 3 are suitable from 32 weeks onwards and partners are very welcome to attend.

The Classes are approximately 2 hours long.

If you wish to book onto one of these classes please email or call 01483 464153.

The dates for these classes are included in the main timetables but please click here to see separately:

Dates for 2019

These classes are FREE, booking is essential please email or call 01483 464153.

Please note that employees have a right to paid time off for antenatal care.  ‘Antenatal care’ isn’t just medical appointments – it can also include antenatal or parenting classes if they’ve been recommended by a doctor or midwife.  Please visit for more information.

To find out times, dates, availability and to book the classes please contact Sheryl O’Shea on or call:  01483 571122 Ext 2031 or visit for more information.

For all questions regarding class content, suitability or advice on what classes or combination of classes might work for you then please contact:

Claire Barraud  

Antenatal Education Specialist Midwife

©2018 Royal Surrey County Hospital

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