Antenatal classes

This page explains the education antenatal workshops we offer to women being cared for by our midwifery team.

About the workshops

We offer a variety of workshops to help you both during and after your pregnancy. You can come to all of the workshops or just choose the ones that you are interested in. Your birth supporting partner or other relative/friend is welcome to attend the workshops with you.

If you have any difficulty speaking or understanding English we can arrange classes in your language by asking your midwife or contacting antenataleducation@gstt.nhs.uk.

Where are the workshops held?

Currently most antenatal classes, also known as workshops, are held at the Antenatal Education Room within the Antenatal Clinic at St Thomas' Hospital, North Wing, 8th floor. Some caseload teams also run classes in the community if you are not sure, please ask your midwife.

Workshops

The classes are free and intended for women between 32-36 weeks of pregnancy, but women pregnant with twins can attend a bit earlier from 28 weeks, in addition to twin classes.

In 2018, day classes do not need booked in advance however evening classes do need booked through Eventbrite. In 2019, all day and evening classes must be booked via the Eventbrite booking system. The workshops are very friendly and many women do attend alone, you are welcome to bring a birth supporter, who will also need to book a free ticket so we know how many people are in the room and comply with fire safety regulations.

Please arrive on time as the doors will close 15 minutes after the starting time.

  • Day antenatal classes and content

    In 2019, day classes need booked in advance for free via the Eventbrite booking system. Our 'Labour, birth, feeding and 'Life with a new baby' workshops cover signs of labour, when to call the hospital, coping methods, typical vaginal birth and giving birth in theatre scenarios. We take regular breaks during the morning, stopping for lunch about 12 noon. St Thomas’ Hospital's ground floor has a range of cafes and food retailers that you can buy lunch from, you are also welcome to bring your own food and use the Riverside Café seating.

    The afternoon session starts at 1pm, when we often have a health visitor attend to introduce their role once you return home following the birth. Using dolls, we teach you ways to hold and feed your baby, discuss all aspects of breastmilk and feeding and relate this to how life will be at home with your new baby.

    2018 dates for our whole day classes (Word 41Kb)

    2019 dates for our whole day classes (PDF 103Kb). More information about our 2019 antenatal classes is available on Eventbrite.

    These classes no longer include a tour - please see our virtual tour of our maternity unit

    Labour (9.15am-12 noon)

    Feeding your baby and life with a new baby (1pm-3.30pm)

    • Benefits of breastfeeding
    • Positioning and attachment of your baby at the breast
    • Expressing and storing milk
    • Where to get help and support
    • Responsive parenting
    • Postnatal mental health
  • Evening antenatal classes

    In 2018, evening antenatal classes run on the first two Wednesdays and last two Thursdays of the month, 5.30-8.30pm. The first Wednesday and Thursday of the month will be the labour workshop. The second Wednesday and Thursday will be the 'Breastfeeding and parenting' workshop. You don’t need to book both, when you book the first one (Labour), the system automatically reserves a space for you on the second one (Breastfeeding and parenting). It includes a space for you and a companion.

    Please be advised if you do not book, you will be unable to attend.

    Find out more information about the evening classes 2018 dates (PDF 38Kb).

    In 2019, booking is slightly different from 2018. Part one (Labour and birth classes) need booked separately from Part two (Feeding and life with a new baby class), this gives you more flexibility when choosing your dates. If you are bringing a birth supporter, you also need to book a ticket for them so we know who is attending and can comply with fire safety standards. 

  • Other workshops

    Twins/multiple pregnancies

    Drop-in workshops. One Monday a month, 9am-12 noon.

    Ideal time to attend is between 24 and 32 weeks of your pregnancy.

    We can usually arrange a visit to the neonatal unit during the workshop

    Talk on pain relief by one of our anaesthetists

    Drop-in workshop held once a month on Tuesdays, 5-6pm.

    Home birth workshop

    Drop-in workshop held once a month on Fridays, 6pm-8pm.

    Information is given by community midwives about birthing at home.

    Physiotherapy antenatal class (For Women Only)

    Alternate Mondays from 17.30-19.00. The class is held within the Physiotherapy department at St Thomas’s Hospital.

    Please bring your Antenatal book. Ideal time to attend is between 12 and 30 weeks of your pregnancy.

    A physiotherapist runs the workshop and offers advice about:

    • safe exercise in pregnancy
    • pelvic floor muscle exercises
    • care of your back and pelvis
    • returning to fitness after birth
    • optimal foetal positioning and Perineal massage

    To book, please e-mail antenatalphysiotherapyclass@gstt.nhs.uk for further information or call 02071 885084.

    Aqua Aerobics in Pregnancy

    For women booked at St Thomas’s hospital with depression, anxiety, gestational diabetes.

    • Date: Tuesdays from 3pm (45 minutes each) starting from February 27 2018
    • Guy’s Hospital Orchard Lisle Pool, London Bridge
    • Offered as 4 sessions which are £10 in total - payable on first session and by card ONLY.

    To book, please e-mail aquanatalclasses@gstt.nhs.uk for further information.



Other resources

Pregnancy information is available on the NHS website.

 

How to find us

St Thomas' Hospital
Antenatal clinic
8th floor, North Wing
Westminster Bridge Road
London SE1 7EH

Email: antenataleducation
@gstt.nhs.uk

Download map to antenatal clinic (PDF 1Mb).