It was a typically early start to Christmas for Philippa Snow and fiancé Scott Mirgaux when their seven-year-old son Ryley (corr) woke bright and early to open his presents.

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Hairdresser Philippa, 30, tried to usher him back to bed at 4.30am but any hopes of a lie-in were shattered when her waters broke.

Ryley was dropped off with grandparents as they made the dash from their home in Ellough Road, Beccles, to the James Paget University Hospital in Gorleston.

Philippa said: “Ryley was really good and did just what he was told but I feel really sorry for him.

“He took some of his presents with him but did not even have the chance to open a lot of them.”

Their second child, Louie (corr), was delivered by midwives at 9.40am weighing 8lb 8.5oz – and had the distinction of being the first Christmas Day baby at the hospital.

Philippa said: “Louie was due to arrive on Saturday so I was not expecting this at Christmas.”

Scott, 34, who works as an aerial fitter for Waveney Aeriels in Lowestoft, said: “This is certainly going to be a Christmas that we always remember.

Midwives at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King’s Lynn were called into action earlier on Christmas Day.

Mum and dad Laura and Darren Jordan, of Watlington, near King’s Lynn, were thrilled when Holly Mae Jordan arrived at 2.15am.

The new arrival, who weighed in at 8lb 8oz, is a younger sister to their first child Macy, aged two years and 10 months.

Meanwhile, Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital had by far the busiest start to Christmas. By 2pm, seven new arrivals had made their entrance into the world at the hospital, with another baby girl not quite hanging on long enough to make it to Colney.

Ripley Howes ended up being born in an ambulance en route, with her mum having been determined not to miss out on her other little girl opening her Christmas presents.

Bianca Dye, 30, from Sprowston, started feeling Labour pains at about 1am on Christmas morning. However, having had daughter Skye two-and-a-half years ago, she thought she had a bit more time on her side than turned out to be the case.

She said: “I waited as long as I could because I wanted to see my little girl open her presents. But my waters broke in Sweet Briar Road while we were in the car. An ambulance came and pretty much as soon as I got into it, Ripley shot out.”

Weighing in at 6lb 8oz, Ripley was born at 4.55am.

Hairdresser Ms Dye, whose partner Andrew Howes, 33, works as a mechanic for ATS, said she had managed to open one of her Christmas gifts before making the dash to the hospital.

She said: “I opened a box of chocolates, but I’ve had pregnancy diabetes, so I couldn’t eat them anyway!”

Katrina Hopcroft’s little girl, born at 7.04am weighing 8lb 10oz, will have plenty of siblings to play with - she was the seventh child for Mrs Hopcroft, 37, and her husband Craig, 39, who works as an HGV driver.

Her new daughter, who has yet to be given a name, will soon meet brothers and sisters Dale, 19, Cooper, 13, Payten, 12, Carter, nine, Ashten, seven and Devon, three.

She said her husband was back home in Dereham making sure her new arrival’s hungry brothers and sisters were fed.

Claire Riches, 26, who lives near Wymondham, had her and 30-year-old partner Kristofer Beaumont’s first child, Stephen John Beaumont, at 3.56am. She said it was nice to have her son, who weighed 8lb 5oz, on such a special day.

Katherine Mace, 31, of Keswick Hall, near Norwich, had her 6lb 5oz Christmas Day baby, named Alice Rose, at 2.57am.

Supply teacher Ms Mace, whose partner Kevin Mundy, 37, teaches at East Point Academy at Lowestoft, said her first child had been due on December 29, but had become “the best Christmas present ever”.

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