A brand new Maternity Suite at HMS Collingwood has been launched to provide Royal Navy servicewomen with physical training classes and emotional support during their pregnancy and while on maternity leave.

With a real lack of postnatal groups available in the area, the new facilities provide a fantastic area for mothers and those expecting.

The cleverly named ‘Bumps and Babies’ suite is proving extremely popular, with large numbers of Royal Navy servicewomen already putting themselves through their paces at the club.

The grant not only enables servicewomen to access prenatal exercise classes but also emotional support classes.

New mother and beneficiary of the facilities at HMS Collingwood, Lieutenant Penelope Thompson said: "As a class it is invaluable.  I went on maternity last August and whilst pregnant struggled with circuits until I couldn’t adapt the exercises anymore and then I had to manage on my own. 

“Had I had the Bumps and Babies classes I would have been able to continue with my fitness much longer.”

The project was spearheaded by Leading Physical Trainer Luke Steel, who was pivotal in coordinating and organising the launch of the new facilities. Steel, who arranged ongoing classes, said: “The maternity suite and circuits provide invaluable support for females both at HMS Collingwood and the local areas of Fareham and Gosport for partners of serving personnel.”

“As a physical trainer, it's overwhelming to see the results from the support provided.”

The Maternity Suite which was funded by the RNRMC currently has three post-natal instructors and provides circuits twice weekly.

Classes are held bi-weekly on Mondays from 1000 to 1100 and further details can be obtained from LPT Steele, extension 2625.